Thread: Life/Career Certification Help
March 17th, 2008, 09:14 AM #1
- Join Date
- Mar 2008
Life/Career Certification Help
Hello all, I'm currently working at a coffee shoppe and I'm currently thinking about getting an A+ and starting on the trek to the Microsoft certs or something corollary. I've been discouraged though by the remarks about the current U.S. economy and technology in general. I currently have half of a bachelors in electrical engineering and an associates in science from a technical college i want to try to finish but I can no longer afford to pay for school. I was wondering is the payout worth it for receiving a cert or 4? And exactly HOW bad is the IT field now in relation to the economy? I am making barely above minimum wage now and there is no way I'm going to become remotely close to paying for the rest of my education at this level of income. I am a very quick learner and I believe i could probably pass any test in about six weeks of time. I'm just worried that time and effort will go in vein. Any feedback is welcome.
Last edited by misftchr; March 17th, 2008 at 09:21 AM.
March 17th, 2008, 12:35 PM #2
Let me start off by saying welcome to TechIMO.
Well I will try to answer all your questions in order. Don't be discuraged by the "current" market situation because in 20 years, coffee will be made by robots but someone will still need to code, test, and build a robot to do that job.
Now let me address the payout question. Depending on your area, since you didnt mention where you live i dont want to assume, your going to making a sub-par wage as a barrista unless your one of those folks who goes to the barrista competitions and wins some loot here and there. You can check Hotjobs and see what kind of jobs are available in your area and how the pay compares. You would essentially be limited to help desk or call center/support jobs. These are typical entry level positions with little to no skill required. The average i would expect from the national level would be in the mid to high teens for pay, more if your in california for instance and less if your in montana.
The IT field bares almost no reflection to the economy because people are ALWAYS buying computers and needing support for them. As bad as the economy is for many fields, solid companies like Apple, Intel, and Microsoft hold us afloat. Also depending on your area, you may not have a computer industry to speak of, think montana.
Seeing that you make above minimum wage, which varies from as low as 5.25 federal to 9.25 in san francisco, this could be a big bump but remember that the TYPE of job is completely different. Your going from a stressed but social environment where you interact heavily with not only your coworkers but the people you make coffee for. Now if you get in a call center, your going to be in a cubicle farm and your going to be working entirely by yourself with people who are often times frustrated and/or upset. You will not get the smiling faces or the attractive smiles and you may hate the people you work with.
Now as for you being a quick learner, that's one thing but what you need to understand is that some of these test are very involved and require you to have actual hands on experience with the items involved. Passing the A+ will be not so bad but as you delve deeper into the workings of Microsoft Certs, you will begin to see that it stops being easy.
Now, the last bit i will touch on is that you need to make sure that this is something you REALLY want to do. If you plan on doing this as a job and not a career, then don't bother with the cert and just get a call center job. If you burn out in a year or two then so be it. If you can stick with it and find that you want to do more, then get a cert and use the experience you have as a call center person and transition into a different type of work in the IT field. (since you have a sales type background, six months to a year of Geek Squad will look good enough on a resume to hire as an entry level tech at a mom and pop repair store or potentially even an internship at a larger company.)
June 9th, 2008, 06:51 PM #3
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- Jun 2008
If you're looking into networking, you need to know that employers in today's market are requiring experience *before* a job is offered, even with certifications. You may ask, "So how does one get experience without a job to start with?"
Very good question.
You'll need to work for free for a while (i.e. "internship") or either find an insider at an IT company somewhere who's willing to have pity and get you a job through the back door somewheres.
Just don't get discouraged if you finally get a cert and can't find a job. We've all been there, I think.
Best of luck in the career search.
June 10th, 2008, 03:04 PM #4
You have to keep in mind that where you live and the economic status of the nation is not going to favor you right now. Keep your chin up and dont be discouraged if you spend a few months interviewing and getting nothing. Stay professional and you will find yourself in a cubicle soon enough!
Last edited by nemowolf; June 10th, 2008 at 03:08 PM.
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