College?

I’ve written an 1,100-page book on JavaScript. I’ve written a MathML editor for Mozilla (pre-release, but still fairly good). I’ve created new widgets and new ideas for programming in Mozilla. I’ve dabbled in amateur science fiction that’s been rather well-received. And I still haven’t gone to college yet.
I’m 26 years old, and I’m working in a job that, while enjoyable, has nothing to do with the sort of stuff I want to be doing. For years, my parents have been telling me to go to college, and I’ve been saying for years I want to go. But if I keep putting it off… how many companies would be willing to hire me for doing what I love doing: developing web technologies and/or writing about them?
So, I need your help.
I’m calling for any sort of connections (networking in the original sense of the word) that can help me get into college and get a degree. Whatever you think might help me, please let me know through my e-mail and/or this blog (which ends up in my e-mail anyway). Whether it’s scholarships, good advice, letters of recommendation, whatever: I need it, and I need it fast.
I’ve just sent off an exploratory e-mail to the admissions dept. of my local community college. It’s a first step, but I pray it’s not the last.

6 thoughts on “College?”

  1. I’m in college now.
    My advice is pretty simple: use the application to say what you did.
    For job experience: work that in.
    For the essay (which always in some abstract way wants you to talk about accomplishments): work that in.
    That’s what I did. Out of high school I was a web developer and programmer. I was able to include in my essay how my little programs were included in various magazines on a few continents of this globe.
    What you need to do is sell yourself. Worked for me.

  2. Can do, will do. More advice welcome.
    I sort of feel like my application to college will seem a little like the last cartoon on this page.

  3. As a late bloomer myself I can only recommend that you seriously consider the community college route first, followed by a transfer to a 4 (more like 6) year university. The application process at that point is painless and a lot of universities have transfer agreements/preferences for community college students. Best of luck to you.

  4. I’m in a similar situation, job-wise, but I do have the college degree. I work in a temp position, doing boring data entry work, on an interesting project for a great company. However, I’m waaay overqualified and it only involves perhaps 10% of my CS background.
    I’d be in better shape if I had varied my work experience in school to broaden my skills a bit. I have the degree but don’t have the 5 years of experience in these specific technologies which the job listing suggests are required.
    I think you’re in good shape on the experience end. Once taking classes, you might consider an internship at a tech company (if you can afford little-to-no pay). With your experience, you’d probably make a good impression. Internships are a great way for companies to “test out” potential employees.
    Good luck.

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