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Breaking Into The Web-development Industry

Okay, so let's keep this brief.

I am in my final year of Marine Engineering studies (under-grad), and I have no desire to join a sea-going vessel at the end of the year. What I want to do is work as a web-developer, mainly back-end work, but some front-end as well.

At the end of this year I'll have an under-grad degree in Marine Engineering. I'm teach myself web-dev (I have no time for formal classes, anywhere). I started with basic HTML/CSS/Javascript, then some Rails, and now XSLT, after which I'll take up Symphony.

So yeah, a degree in Marine Engineering (whatever that's worth) and knowledge of web-development as well as a few portfolio websites (I'm thinking a blog, an e-commerce site, and forums).

What else do I need? I am open to all sorts of advice. I'm 21, living in India, at the moment, passionate about computer and technology, open to all things in life.
I'd say you want to first get a good portfolio established. You can even offer to do some small work for free for local charities, nonprofits, friends, whatever. Anything you can use to showcase your skills later on in life. The thing that most people look for when they hire these developers is what they have done in the past. Degrees don't mean as much as things that they have done. As long as you have the chops and the experience and the gallery and portfolio to show for it, you should be fine. And by having another degree in marine engineering, this gives you another option in case web development doesn't go your way. I'm sure there's more to that field than sitting on a seagoing vessel (although I'm not sure why you would want to major in that if you didn't want to do that).

Good luck!
I wonder why you majored in Marine Engineering if you were so unsure about it. Regarding web development, what really matters is skill. If you've got skill, there is a good chance people will hire you. How do you show off that skill? Simple: create good websites. Put them on the web. Build things that you're passionate about. Always push the limit. Take up projects that seem too large for your abilities, and learn new things in order to do the project successfully. I have freelancer friends who earn hundreds of dollars from contracts. I also have friends who work with other organizations and have a steady income. The path you want to take is upto you. Best of luck! Very Happy
As an expert and veteran when it comes to web design, I'd say learn all there is to know about coding and then look how graphics are incorporated with building websites. You may not have the time for classes but there are other things like YouTube that can teach you a lot about what you want to know, your explanation is not an excuse. If you want to have that slight chance of making it in such a big industry then you better do all you can to improve and better yourself.
You also need content, which basically is the subject of the website. With a degree in Marine Engineering, you will be able to aat least provide the online framework for a website related to that field. Whether you do so on your own or on behalf of someone else is another matter. But you will likely be able to converse intelligently with other marine engineers. The difficulties will be in getting them to say what they want in a website. (I suggest asking them to list sites they like and what they like about them.)
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