sorry to bother, how do u even get an internship or build up a resume when ur only coding experience is roughly 1 semester of an intro comp course? after switching majors my carefully planned life path is in shambles, & i already feel like i'm way behind & losing some race by starting so late, & i'll feel useless if i don't do anything over the summer. i have no idea how to even begin being a comp sci major. ofc u don't have to answer esp if it stressed u out, hope ur doing well!!
Ah, I can definitely offer you what I know from experience!
First off–give yourself a little time to calm down. These are big-picture things, so being frazzled about it right out of the gate will only make it seem more stressful.
I was in a similar(ish) boat. I thought I wanted to do biomedical engineering until late into sophomore year I realized all the projects I’d really enjoyed were coding projects. So I switched to engineering modified with computer science without actually having any CS courses under my belt.
Over the summer I had a resume screening, then a first-round interview with Microsoft through my college’s recruitment program. This past fall I got flown out to Redmond Washington to interview with them. Microsoft final-round interviews are four complete interviews in four hours.
In each and every one of them, I brought up the (kinda humorous) fact that my resume and transcript was real sparse on CS classes. I made it entirely clear why, that I realized sophomore year I really really like coding, and I was willing to uproot my current and careful plan to pursue that. (One of my interviewers had been a physics major who then pursued coding afterward, so he could relate.) I told a story about the moment I realized what I wanted to do, and made it as entertaining and clear as possible that I’m serious about my switch.
They like to hear about projects! I made a program last year that took audio files and deconstructed the frequencies out of them. I made it because I was researching the Fourier transform and just got all carried away with taking it to the logical extreme. That program was terribly formatted, made with all the grace of a non-CS student who doesn’t know shit for nothing about computers, A real CS major would have looked at the repeated lines of code and started crying, probably. I didn’t bring that part up. I just talked about it as something to prove my own creativity and capacity and passion–it was a formative part in me wanting to pursue CS.
As a whole, they’re less concerned with the name of your major and your list of classes than they are with what you can say about yourself, your passions, your projects.
As for the technical part of the interviews, the nice thing is that they tended to not be that technical. Like, they don’t anticipate you code an app before their eyes. They ask you “write a program that can [xyz]” and they then expect you to brainstorm through your process (they’ll give you hints along the way) and write up a proto code on the whiteboard. Because you’re physically writing on a whiteboard with only about 30 minutes of time, they don’t anticipate it’ll be perfectly written or very long. I was using C, a language I hadn’t had real practice in in over a year. I’m certain there were random syntax errors in my solutions, but I’d already told them I was approaching CS from a weird angle. They were more interested in whether or not I could problem solve, test and backtrack, explain my code, and formulate a solution.
I got the internship, having never technically taken a class out of my college’s CS department (although, I’d been exposed in some of my engineering courses).
As for preparation, if your college has a career development center, they can help tons. Our center offers free hour-long sessions (I think you can only book one per week?) and one of the workers there helped walk me through creating a decent resume. Also advisers! Track down your adviser, or the CS Department head and talk with them about what the requirements are for a CS major. They’re there to help you. (Your college’s website may list it out as well.)
And if you find yourself prepping for a technical interview without much background, the internet is your friend! I worked through parts of my college’s CS10 class’s website while I was preparing (I hadn’t taken CS10, but the website was available to anyone who searched it.) As well as Khan Academy videos (funfact: the algorithms section of Khan Academy was entirely drafted up by one of my college’s profs–I’ve spoken to him a few times.)
I think that’s the extent of what I know. I hope it can help you some. I’ve got my fingers crossed for you!