Although most casual observers still associate big tech with California, there is another state that is quickly becoming a major software engineering and development hub in the United States. With affordable real estate and fewer tax restrictions, Texas is home to many major tech companies as well as startups. And now that many venture capital firms are investing heavily in Texas-based companies, the future of software engineering is bright in the Lone Star State.
Texas is also supported by groundbreaking tech colleges and research universities, making it one of the leading states for earning a software engineering degree.
Software Engineering Landscape in Texas
Texas has emerged as one of the top hiring states for software engineers and developers. Within the next decade alone, Texas is projected to add over 15,000 software developer positions every year. With a projected job growth of 36% by 2030, Texas is one of the fastest-growing software engineering markets, outpacing nearly every other state in the country.
Austin in particular has become a critical technology hub, leading many to compare the capital city to Silicon Valley. In 2021, Austin was named the fastest-growing major metropolitan area in the United States, primarily due to the city’s lower real estate costs and support of groundbreaking tech firms.
In a recent TechCrunch article, Austin was described as being more than simply an overnight success:
For years it was known primarily for its software scene—in addition to being the live music capital of the world. But today, new growing sectors include crypto/web3, real estate tech, CPG and insurance technology. As in other maturing markets, companies that have seen success in the past are now spawning a new generation of entrepreneurs as well as attracting others from various locales.
It is not only Austin that is creating a technological renaissance in Texas. Other major metropolitan areas, such as Dallas-Fort Worth, are welcoming software development firms and innovative startups in growing numbers, as well as major corporations that are leaving California in search of new opportunities.
For software engineers, this means an exciting career outlook and the opportunity to find a well-paying, meaningful job after graduation. For those who decide to earn a software engineering degree in Texas, it also means the chance to study at some of the top computer science programs in the country.
Software Engineering Education in Texas
Whether students are seeking an undergraduate degree to launch their career, a graduate program to deepen their abilities, or certification to advance in their current job, there are countless opportunities to find the right school in Texas.
Texas is filled with undergraduate programs that deliver experienced faculty, rigorous academics, and experiential learning.
Baylor University is a highly-rated private university in Waco, offering a BS in Computer Science with a Software Engineering Concentration. Along with being a top-ranked academic institution, Baylor offers a number of research opportunities which span across “pattern specification, software architecture, microservice-based enterprise application design, code analysis, security assessment, model-driven analysis and testing.”
The University of Texas at Dallas offers a full spectrum of educational programs, where students can earn a BS, an MS, even a PhD in software engineering. Perhaps most exciting about the university, however, is their commitment to research and innovation. UT Dallas offers seven different research laboratories, including the recently completed $110 million Engineering and Computer Science West building.
While schools such as UT Dallas, Texas Tech, and Southern Methodist University offer full master’s degree programs, UT Austin has a specialized program that can be completed in as little as two semesters.
Intended for working software engineers, the UT Austin Software Engineering Executive Master’s Degree allows for a flexible work schedule (students can attend in person or watch recorded lectures) as well as the option to substitute course work with an independent project called a Master’s Report.
For career professionals who want to advance their careers but don’t have the time for a full program, a graduate-level certificate program is the perfect opportunity to increase their skills with a fully remote, two-semester program.
Texas State Technical College also offers a graduate certificate, with several areas of specialization. Their TSTCYou program delivers an experiential, flexible learning environment with locations throughout the state.
Software Engineering Jobs in Texas
The good news for software engineers is that there is no shortage of jobs to be found after graduation. Major corporations are continuing to relocate to Texas, including industry leaders Hewlett-Packard and Oracle. With an annual mean wage of over $110K, software engineers and developers are highly lucrative careers for both entry-level employees and mid-career professionals.
International computer giant Dell Technologies has over 450 software engineering jobs currently available at its various locations around the globe, including corporate headquarters in Round Rock, Texas.
After earning a BS from one of the many Texas-based software engineering degree programs, graduates will be ready to enter the job market with a wealth of knowledge and experience. And the future looks increasingly bright. With an exciting job outlook and growing support for tech companies throughout the state, now is the right time for students to pursue a degree, and a career, in software engineering.