Techies tanpa Gelar Akademis

17, January, 2005

<!-- @page { size: 8.27in 11.69in; margin: 0.79in } P { margin-bottom: 0.08in } --> </p> <p>MASIH segar dalam ingatan Celeb Sima betapa murkanya orang-orang di sekelilingnya begitu tahu ia berhenti dari bangku SMU dan menerima sebuah pekerjaan pada saat high-tech boom.</p> <p>Bahkan kepala sekolahnya pun sempat mengingatkan dia betapa jalan yang ia tempuh itu akan sia-sia. Tapi sekarang, sang kepala sekolah boleh gigit jari.</p> <p>Punya gaji enam digit sebagai CTO (chief technology officer) sebuah perusahaan keamanan online, Sima adalah salah seorang dari sekelompok techies muda yang mendulang sukses besar tanpa gelar akademis pasca maraknya bisnis teknologi informasi (TI) pada paruh akhir 1990-an.</p> <p>Soal berapa banyak orang yang berhasil dan gagal dalam manuver semacam ini tentulah mustahil untuk diungkap. Tapi kisah nyata ini tetaplah menjadi inspirasi tak terperi: Sima, pemuda berusia 24 tahun yang kini kaya-raya, bahkan merencanakan akan pensiun pada usia 30 tahun!</p> <p>“Saya sempat marah ketika mendengar ada orang yang mengatakan kamu harus punya gelar akademis untuk mendapatkan gaji tertentu,” ujarnya seperti yang ditulis CNN.com bulan lalu. “Itu tidak betul.”</p> <p>Sima berusia 16 tahun ketika ia meninggalkan bangku sekolahnya, karena ia merasa sekolahnya tak mampu menyediakan komputer yang dinginkannya.</p> <p>Lalu ia bekerja sebagai tenaga servis komputer, perlahan mendapat promosi menjadi administratur keamanan sebuah bank online dan kemudian mendirikan sebuah perusahaan pada 2000.</p> <p>Dengan segala pengalaman yang diperolehnya, ia tak pernah menyesal telah meninggalkan bangku sekolahnya. Bahkan hingga saat ini, ia sering menemukan para pencari kerja yang memiliki ijazah Ph.D dalam ilmu komputer tapi tidak tahu apa yang harus dikerjakan.</p> <p>“Buku-buku ilmu pengetahuan komputer kadang memang membantu dunia TI, tapi tidak mencerminkan pengetahuan dunia nyata,” ujarnya. Kemajuan teknologi sangat cepat dan tak mungkin teriringi oleh buku-buku komputer akademis.</p> <p>“Ada ribuan bahkan jutaan orang yang memiliki kemampuan TI tanpa memiliki gelar akademis. Kami tumbuh bersama komputer,” ujar Sima.</p> <p>Bill Gates dan Michael Dell menjadi miliarder tanpa menamatkan kuliahnya.</p> <p>Tapi Sima tidak menyarankan para techies belia berhenti sekolah tanpa alasan yang kuat.</p> <p>Kisah Sima, dan tentu saja Gates dan Dell, mengirimkan satu pesan yang amat gamblang: bangku sekolah dan universitas bukanlah segala-galanya.</p> <p>Dunia komputer dan TI lebih membutuhkan orang yang cepat dan tepat dalam mengambil keputusan, imajinatif, kreatif dan inovatif.</p> <p>Apalagi, ketika dunia TI sudah harus bertarung dalam kompetisi bisnis, keahlian dan ketrampilan akademis dalam ilmu komputer akan menjadi salah satu aspek saja.</p> <p>Aspek-aspek lain yang dibutuhkan adalah kemampuan kalkulasi bisnis, menguasai pendekatan sosiologi, komunikasi, psikologi, antropologi, statistik, seni dan lain sebagainya.</p> <p>Kepekaan, visi dan cita-rasa juga sangat dibutuhkan ketika bersaing dan bertanding dalam kompetisi. Bukankah hal-hal semacam itu tidak didapatkan di bangku sekolah dan kuliah?</p> <p>Mengingat tidak semua orang akan seberuntung Sima, Gates maupun Dell, bagaimanapun, kemampuan akademis tetap diperlukan. Para ahli yang andal di setiap bidang TI tentu harus terus-menerus disiapkan.</p> <p>Namun, seperti yang sering disarankan Gates dan Dell, sambil sekolah dan kuliah, cobalah untuk tetap mengasah kemampuan dan kepekaan.</p> <p>Jangan hanya terbenam di perpustakaan dan tersandera di laboratorium saja. Bacalah buku-buku populer, novel, simak suratkabar dan majalah, dengarkanlah musik dan tontonlah film. Ini berguna untuk mengasah imajinasi dan kreativitas.</p> <p>Lihatlah dunia sekitar. Amatilah masyarakat yang menggunakan teknologi. Berbicaralah dengan orang-orang yang bekerja di bidang ini. Dan bersiaplah jadi techies yang akan mengguncang dunia! 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