Solved College Degree and Certifications to Pursue

Dell / LATITUDE E6400
November 18, 2013 at 17:54:34
Specs: None, Intel Core 2 Duo E7500/2 GB DDR3
Hey all,
I'm interested in going in to IT support and becoming an IT manager for various careers as the career I want to go into once I graduate college and such. My question is, what degree should I pursue in college that would help me the most with that kind of career, and what certifications I should also take. I just wanted to get some opinions here, one of my good friends who is already in a similar career said to go for a Computer Science degree and certifications like A+ at this point. Thanks!

RMT2

You've been helped by a 16 year old.


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✔ Best Answer
November 20, 2013 at 07:20:29
so I've also been trying to figure out what I should work on before I head off to college. Should I try to get more experience with hardware or programming, maybe get some certifications, or maybe even get an entry level IT job?

What aspect(s) of computing do you enjoy the most and are best at?

I suck totally at programming. I learned that by my second beginners C/C++ class. But give me operating systems, networking and/or domain administration and I rock it. So I pursued a 2 year diploma as well as A+, Network+, MCSE and a pile of vendor certifications for all different brands of computers and Lexmark and HP printers.

Other people on the other hand don't find building computers and servers, networking, administering domains all that exciting and actually do understand programming so they pursue that side of things.

As I stated above, if you want to be management, then you're going to want to get a Comp Sci degree at the very least.

Should you get an entry level IT job? Well, the simple answer is yes. That's where everybody starts. Mind you, if you get a degree, chances are you'll start a little higher up the food chain than I did with my 2 year diploma and certs, but you still won't start at the top as a Director or VPIT making a quarter million a year. We all have to put in our time and work our way up. Anybody who tries to tell you they didn't is a liar.

Considering what you're doing in your home, I'd highly recommend you see if you can't get hired on at a computer store doing hardware in the back. Building and burn-in testing systems, diagnosing and fixing problems and such is enjoyable if you like it (I do). If you can, get your A+ as that's considered a minimum for doing that kind of stuff. At the very least, you get some experience while earning money. Oh, and when I say computer store, I'm not talking about an electronics store that sells smart phones and TV's too. I mean computers and computer peripheral's only. They tend to have much more accomplished tech's in back doing the work.

It matters not how straight the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate;
I am the captain of my soul.

***William Henley***

message edited by Curt R



#1
November 19, 2013 at 03:15:24
As Doris Day said in one of Hitchock's movies "Che serĂ  serĂ " aka "Whatever will be will be". Change is the driving force of life, a college degree may loosely influence your future career especially in IT.

Bill Gates was attending law faculty at Harvard when joined to his friends in New Mexico to then start up Microsoft. I earned a degree in nuclear engineering and became IT manager in a corporate banking.

Strong technical knowledge may help, but you have to love what you are pursuing to get success.

message edited by IVO


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#2
November 19, 2013 at 04:47:22
If you want to get into computing then certainly a Comp Sci degree is a good idea. My boss has his Master's in that as well as an electrical engineering degree.

If you want to get into the management side of things then a degree in Comp Sci is definitely the way to go.

Theoretically, if you have a degree, you don't "need" any cert's but can certainly pursue those for your own knowledge. Which to get depends on what aspects of computing interest you most. A comp sci degree covers programming but if you're into networking then you'd want to get a Network+ cert. If you like building machines, A+. If you want to do network security then Security+ and so on.

It matters not how straight the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate;
I am the captain of my soul.

***William Henley***


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#3
November 19, 2013 at 07:16:24
I have a degree in Computer Science and work as an IT manager, however, looking back at my degree i can strongly say that, that was not enough to give me the qualifications and experience i needed to get into this job, other than studying you really need to get some experience and develop your skills. For example, while i was at uni, i wrote a lot of software in my spare time, i read a lot, did some additional training and tried to get as much exposure to technologies as possible.

Essentially what you are doing is building a port folio of projects you have done, regardless of the fact that they may just be for yourself, my first ever software that i wrote was an MSN style chat program that allowed colaberation and also spoke out the messages your friends would send you. This as well as all my other projects are in my port folio and when i ever go to interviews i can show what i have achieved, but it isnt just programing, you need to know how to deal with clients, know about projects life cycles etc.

I agree you must love what you do, and if you are keen on learning then a computer science degree if definately appropriate, but not neccessarily the only thing you should do, think of projects you can do, for yourself and for others this will give you some experience and some exposure.

Trust me IT is fun :)

Enjoy


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#4
November 19, 2013 at 14:34:37
Hey everyone, thanks for your input! Computers are definitely my passion, I have about 70 in my room right now. I work with my local IT friend and take his old computers, erase them, reload software, and then sell them, so I do have experience with scripting for automation and diagnosing hardware. As for now, I still have 2 years left in high school (I'm in sophomore year) so I've also been trying to figure out what I should work on before I head off to college. Should I try to get more experience with hardware or programming, maybe get some certifications, or maybe even get an entry level IT job? Thanks again for your input!

RMT2

You've been helped by a 16 year old.


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#5
November 20, 2013 at 07:20:29
✔ Best Answer
so I've also been trying to figure out what I should work on before I head off to college. Should I try to get more experience with hardware or programming, maybe get some certifications, or maybe even get an entry level IT job?

What aspect(s) of computing do you enjoy the most and are best at?

I suck totally at programming. I learned that by my second beginners C/C++ class. But give me operating systems, networking and/or domain administration and I rock it. So I pursued a 2 year diploma as well as A+, Network+, MCSE and a pile of vendor certifications for all different brands of computers and Lexmark and HP printers.

Other people on the other hand don't find building computers and servers, networking, administering domains all that exciting and actually do understand programming so they pursue that side of things.

As I stated above, if you want to be management, then you're going to want to get a Comp Sci degree at the very least.

Should you get an entry level IT job? Well, the simple answer is yes. That's where everybody starts. Mind you, if you get a degree, chances are you'll start a little higher up the food chain than I did with my 2 year diploma and certs, but you still won't start at the top as a Director or VPIT making a quarter million a year. We all have to put in our time and work our way up. Anybody who tries to tell you they didn't is a liar.

Considering what you're doing in your home, I'd highly recommend you see if you can't get hired on at a computer store doing hardware in the back. Building and burn-in testing systems, diagnosing and fixing problems and such is enjoyable if you like it (I do). If you can, get your A+ as that's considered a minimum for doing that kind of stuff. At the very least, you get some experience while earning money. Oh, and when I say computer store, I'm not talking about an electronics store that sells smart phones and TV's too. I mean computers and computer peripheral's only. They tend to have much more accomplished tech's in back doing the work.

It matters not how straight the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate;
I am the captain of my soul.

***William Henley***

message edited by Curt R


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#6
November 22, 2013 at 15:17:50
Hey,
Like you, I also find the hardware side of things more interesting to me, or at the very least, it is much easier for me to understand and work with than trying to write a program.

Networking also usually makes sense to me, although I am still learning constantly (isn't everyone?). I have my own little Active Directory domain setup on a 2008 R2 box here, using NAT to route network traffic through the server. Nowadays I'm just starting to get the grips of Group Policy and how it can be used to manage users.

I will try my best to find some entry level IT job here, although I live in a relatively small town so there aren't all that many different IT places, but I have a few connections. Thanks again for your input,
RMT2

You've been helped by a 16 year old.


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