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Career Advice

Discussion in 'Employment & Jobs' started by Gerry, Oct 2, 2009.

  1. Gerry

    Gerry New Member

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    Hi,

    I live in New York and have graduated in August with a Bachelors in Computer information Systems. I feel very confused about what path to bring my career in. Most of the jobs I have seen require 3 or more years experience which I do not have.
    I am also not so sure about what field in IT to get into, I would like to be a DBA but my experience is preventing me from gaining employment. Is there a better field for entry level IT job seekers to focus on??

    Does anyone have any advice on what I should do? Should i go back to school and obtain a masters or possible get certifications?

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated

    Thank You,

    Gerry
     
  2. wagnerk
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    wagnerk aka kitkatninja Moderator

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    Hi & welcome to CF :)

    Congrats on the degree. I assume that you've only been looking for IT work since you've graduated, which was two months ago. To be honest, two months is nothing especially during this recession. It took me 5 years to get into the IT field, it's taken some people longer and some people not so long.

    If you want to become a DBA, then concentrate on that, however if you want to entry a different field then look outside the DB environment. Unless you're sure about what path you want, what's the point in say entering the web design field if you're trying to become a DBA?

    Where are you looking for jobs? The local newspaper, vaious websites, multiple agencies, what about professional associations like the NPA or Comptia's IT Pro to network with IT Professionals or even social networking sites are useful. DO not limit yourself to only 1 or 2 resources, use everything out there.

    As for getting your Masters degree, put it this way... At some point I'm going to get my Masters (or equivalent qualification) in the future in order to move up to the next step of my career ladder, however I've never seen an entry level position request or imply a Masters degree - but I'm just talking from experience.

    You could look into the CMA, which is MySQL's entry level certification for the DB field. Microsoft does not do a entry level DBA cert, another cert you may want to look into would be Oracle's entry level cert - the OCA, see here for an example.

    Hope this helps :)

    -Ken
     
    Certifications: CITP, PGCert, BSc, HNC, LCGI, PTLLS, MCT, MCITP, MCTS, MCSE, MCSA:M, MCSA, MCDST, MCP, MTA, MCAS, MOS (Master), A+, N+, S+, ACA, VCA, etc... & 2nd Degree Black Belt
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  3. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    If you're looking for jobs that require three years of experience, then you've set your sights too high. And unfortunately, if your college was like mine, they've given you the wrong impression about what to expect.

    Here's the truth about IT that your professors didn't likely tell you: a college degree isn't a shortcut up the IT career ladder. Although a degree CAN make your resume look more attractive, you'll have to start out at the bottom and work your way up, just like the other 99.9% of us who didn't have an uncle who is an IT manager willing to take a risk on you.

    Don't misunderstand me - a degree is worth getting, and later in your career, it can open doors that would otherwise be closed to you. But a degree isn't necessary for entry-level tech jobs, and a degree cannot be used in lieu of experience. Employers don't care how many classes about information security theory you've taken... they want someone who has already done the job in a real-world, business IT environment. In truth, a Bachelors degree is overkill for entry-level tech jobs; a Masters degree would only compound the problem.

    Had I been your instructor/advisor, I'd have recommended that you work while in school, thereby getting the "entry-level stuff" out of the way and building that experience that employers desire.

    I would recommend that you pursue the A+ while looking for an entry-level tech job - a job that requires no experience. Take ANYTHING you can get your hands on... this is NOT an economy in which you can be picky about what jobs you will and won't take. After you get the A+, add it to your resume and keep looking while studying for the Network+, and followed by the MCDST. But certify no farther than that until you get some real-world experience under your belt; anything beyond those three certifications will make you overcertified for your experience level... which is NOT a good thing.

    Hope this helps. :) Welcome to the forums!
     
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
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  4. OnFire

    OnFire Nibble Poster

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    I can only agree with what BM has said and stress that you don't over certify.

    We were recently looking to hire a new member of the team and it was actually the MCSA's and MCSE's that were eliminated first in the interviews. We have a relatively "simple" technical test as part of the interview process with questions that you won't find on any exam, that ideally any MCSA or MCSE worth their salt should know.

    The candidates with only entry level certificates could be forgiven for getting some of the questions wrong and where quiet open and honest about their lack of experience, which is something we can work with.

    However the higher certified candidates didn't really have and shouldn't have an excuse for not knowing basic technical questions that are covered within the framework of an MCSA and above. If your certified in something then we expect you to know what you're talking about and what was worse was the fact these candidates just kept digging themselves into a bigger hole the more they talked about topics they obviously didn't understand.

    This is not to say we wouldn't hire an MCSA or MCSE, just we would expect anyone with these certifications to know exactly what they are talking about and demonstrate this knowledge.

    In the end we hired one of the more entry level candidates based on the second interview, of which he returned with the answers to any questions he had not known the first time around, showing a nice quality the others didn't.
     
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  5. Sparky
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    Sparky Zettabyte Poster Moderator

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    Isnt that comment slightly 1990s? :biggrin The amount of MCSE candidates that don’t have a clue about IT is unbelievable so if its on the CV or not its just a small thing to consider.

    Like you said though if you have suitable questions then hopefully you can get a feel for the technical level of the candidate.
     
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  6. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    How so? I think his comments are spot-on accurate. He says that he wouldn't turn down MCSE candidates just because they have the MCSE, but he's not gonna hire them just because they have the MCSE, either. In fact, he'd rather have an entry-level person without the MCSE than an entry-level person WITH the MCSE... and I agree, wholeheartedly. Sounds to me like he's agreeing with you more than you might think.

    OnFire, I hope I've summed up your meaning well. In any case, I've repped your post.
     
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2009
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
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  7. OnFire

    OnFire Nibble Poster

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    Couldn't have summed it up better to be honest. I was trying to think of a clever way to put it involving a cake made with experience as the base and then the MCSE purely as the cherry on top but it was making me way to hungry :)
     
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  8. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    heehee!

    Hmm... now that you mention it... I'm gettin' a midnight craving... be right back.
     
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!

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