Are You Ready for the Next Gen Coders…

The typical requirement of four year or three year bachelor degree with over ten years of experience in the related field is not relevant in the IT industry anymore. The new wave of coders are high school graduates with technical training and on the job apprenticeship are ready for your high-tech job within an year! Here is the best part, they are already aware of the agile Scrum processes and are ready for the 60K to 75K IT Job! Quad Cities is one of the regions adapting the trend and is getting ready to manage the young coders!

Youth start coding as young as twelve through the different programs in school or local STEM institutions. They learn typing in schools and are better at organizing work with the Google Docs. Initially used for getting work done, now schools have started using computers for educating students in computers. Engineering, Nursing, Coding, and other STEM courses are popping up in the school curriculum. Robotics has become a mandatory activity for kids in and out of school. High schools have created vocational courses so that the kids can be a certified nurse after passing high school. Some local high schools have made engineering an optional course in all four years so they are ready for the vocational jobs.

Special programs for girls in coding and computer science are in place to encourage coders. The traditional mindset of limiting women to just the Business Analyst or Tester roles will not work anymore. Women in IT are now developing more programs and managing those projects as well. The next gen women coders are able to take up the challenges with more communication skills, perfection, and confidence!

Ignite Quadcities, QCESC, Career Cruising QC, and CoWorkQC in the Quad Cities and NewBoCo and Vault in Cedar Rapids are some of the latest organizations developing young coders. The next generation workforce also have founded an organization and done some consulting in their high school years. Government grants and funds to encourage STEM programs and trade schools has also added to the new trend. Some trade schools do charge some amount for the training. By partnering with local IT companies, they allow local IT managers to visit the students during the apprenticeship and teach what is required at their organizations. Some local colleges are allowing the credits from the trade school to transfer to a degree so the kids can have a Bachelors degree as well. The trade schools are also allowing the kids to work in the Scrum process under a certified Scrum Master so the kids are aware of the process in the IT organizations. In addition, the trade schools are also willing to take older workforce who are stuck in minimum wages through out their lives and are willing to work hard for the change.

The next generation coders are already learning Java (!) during their high school years and participating in the local hacking and coding marathons. Online courses from Khan academy and Udemy are paving a way to learn coding in a systematic way. We do not need the specialists (?) anymore as we can employ our local kids to work in our IT organizations. However, whether they are going to work long enough in the same organization is questionable. Also, are they ready for super stress and long working hours demanded by the Information Technology work. A trade school course can get them a job but is not a substitute for the Bachelors degree and the kids must work towards the degree while working in their dream IT job!


Property Taxes: The Bitter Truth

Property owners are charged yearly by local cities for overall maintenance of the city’s infrastructure. Schools and colleges are funded by the property taxes. Major chunk goes to the development of city’s facilities , salaries, and pensions. However, home owners are unable to digest the hefty bills every year.

Property taxes are the bitter truth of home ownership and if you are in one of the highly taxed states such as Illinois and New Jersey, you better get another job just to pay the property taxes! Some property owners end up paying up to ten percent of the total valuation of the property. The cycle for the property taxes is determined by a pre-defined process set by the city and state. Every year school districts decide the points to charge the city for operating the schools. State taxes may be less but the additional taxes charged by the cities for giving tax deferments to businesses makes the final rate higher. Cities with alternative income sources such as sales tax or income tax may charge lesser property tax.

You can expect a bill compared to a similar homes in your neighborhood. If you did a home improvement in a year, you must notify the city so they can reassess your property for adjusting the taxes. Commercial or business property tax may be different from residential property taxes. Check the local counties website for assessment search in your area.

Notifying the mortgage company and monitoring the city’s records whether the property tax is actually paid by the mortgage company is needed. For new construction properties, the initial mortgage may include only the property tax on the lot. Once the assessment is completed your escrow and mortgage can be adjusted to include the new property tax. Keeping a track is also necessary even if paying by other methods such as cash or check or credit card.

Property tax can be deducted from income taxes but also depends on the government tax rules. It is mandatory to pay the property tax bills similar to any other bill. Owners do maintain all the bills issued and paid. While enjoying the perks of home ownership, owners are also prepared for the yearly property tax bills. 🙂

Teenagers: Managing Highly Demanding Work with High Demands

Teenagers are still growing and are having increasing demands which are difficult to meet. They face a lot of challenges from school, peers, and sports but are equipped with confidence. Parents think teenagers have it all easy but they need more support and understanding now than ever.


High school kids have daily home work that takes three to four hours every day. The advanced and honors courses leave little room for outside fun. Teenagers manage the tests, grades, ACT, SAT, activities, and so on. To meet their demands, teenagers start working as soon as they are eligible. Volunteering in a related interested field is expected at this age. Through volunteering, high school kids are able to explore the study and work choices.


The frontal lobe of the teenagers is still developing. Teenagers are highly susceptible to schizophrenia and other issues.Their perception of situations and problem solving methods are different than adults. Healthy diet, exercise, and more sleep is recommended for overall well being. Social, physical, emotional, and mental health is crucial for teenagers. Any out of school activity costs a lot but there is risk of developing obesity at this age and related complications may arise due to the sedentary lifestyle. Smart phone addiction goes often unrecognized in teenagers.

Peer Pressure

Teenagers face drugs, alcohol, dating, and other situations in daily lives. Increased rates of depression and suicide among teenagers are due to the constant pressure. Cyber-bullying and online crimes on teenagers are getting out of control. They are exposed unimaginable sex and terrorist videos that are available openly on the Internet. Cyber crimes and under age charges can be filed in case of sharing nude photos.


Dating is common in high school and kids are highly anticipating for this in elementary and middle schools. Many end up marrying their high school partners for life long. However, nowadays due to the unlimited exposure, there is high occurrences of teenage pregnancies which hinders their education, work, and lifestyle. Children are exploring their sexuality and identifying their preferences. They are experimenting and knowing their limits. Too much sharing on Snapchat, Facebook, Twitter, live videos, unlimited selfies, and so on take a huge toll on time and efforts. The cost of the dates also is an additional expense for the family! Some do earn through chores and part time jobs.


If you have a teenager at home, probably you have come across all the high-end demands. Smartphone, car, laptop, events, branded gear, allowance, and what not. They have to have the stuff to get along with their friends. ‘All are doing it’ and ‘All have it’ are some of the phrases parents get to hear.


Smartphone for a teenager costs $1000 or more and it needs yearly upgrade! Carrier bill of teenagers with unlimited data costs about $100 a month. High-end earbuds to listen to the music which cost another $150. Monthly music memberships for Spotify and Netflix add another $50. If your high school kid is a gamer, they will need monthly memberships, gaming systems, game remotes, and compatible head phones add another $1000.  If you have a fashion favorite at home, clothing, seasonal attire, and accessories cost another $500 per month (minimum).


Finding a correct match for the courses teenagers wish to study and the college offering them is not decided until they join.  They are applying to colleges and scholarship and writing related essays. The application fees of the colleges and the college visits itself may add up to significant amount.

Managing all 

Teenagers are working their best to meet the work and increasing pressures. Stress management is possible through yoga, meditation, and social and physical activities. The outbursts and yelling are a way to get the stress out. Understanding the kids nature while respecting their growth is needed during their developing years. Helping teenagers take the right decisions and reminding them of the basic rules and life goals keeps them focused.

The challenges faced by current generation are never heard before and they are working hard to get ahead in the competition of study and life! Parents must show their support and encouragement while negotiating their demands.