If you are looking for a job in software programming, a thorough knowledge of one or two programming languages is required. When we are in engineering, the general tendency is to study the programming language in order to pass the exam and the programming lab.
Companies, on the other hand, do not expect knowledge but rather practical experience writing code. The perception among college students is that if you have written those 40 to 80 programs that come as part of the subject, you know programming. But programming is quite different from that.
If you write, let’s say, a few thousand programs, and some of the programs should be to the tune of 1000 lines to 50000 lines, you get a skill called “Programming Skill.”
Since programming is done in the mind and the language is just a tool to express it, instead of knowing the syntax of a programming language, you should concentrate on programming a few thousand lines in that language. That way, your programming logic develops and you get command of the language features.
Companies are interested in whether or not you are proficient in a particular programming language. So you can pick up C or C++ or some other recently growing languages like PHP or Ruby on Rails.
So overall, it is not the knowledge of the programming syntax that is important, but the practice of programming in that language that is required for corporates. And corporates really appreciate this skill over the traditional syntax teaching that is practiced widely in engineering colleges.
So concentrate on “programming” in some language instead of the “language syntax”. Knowing syntax is not equivalent to programming.