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Doing A+ but getting worried about my future

Discussion in 'A+' started by TmWaddell, Dec 10, 2008.

  1. TmWaddell

    TmWaddell New Member


    Before i start talking about what my current situation is, i feel the need to give a bit of back story with regards to how i got in to this situation.... so here we go.

    When i was in year 11, i was on track to receive 11 GCSE's A-C and go on to further education in the form of A Levels, but unfortunately something threw a spanner in the works. I had problems with my immune system and was sick most of the school year. As a consequence, i never managed to sit my GCSE's and had vitrually no support from my school. I basically dropped off the radar as it were.
    Since that massive disappointment in my life, i have found it hard to apply myself to anything at all. I spent the best part of 2 years being thrown back and forward by Connexions (careers advice) from one crappy course to another... Then when i was 18 i found what seemed like an amazing opportunity from a company called "Skills Train". I leaped at the chance to become a "fully qualified IT professional" and the sales pitch from them was nothing short of remarkable. Shortly after i signed up to a 3 year course with them i realized what a mess i had contracted myself in to! Furthermore they were on Watchdog literally 2 days after my 7 day "cooling off" period had ended. This made matters even worse and i hit a new low. The only good thing to come of this whole situation was that i found a course that i actually wanted to apply myself to... the A+! I realized from reading posts from people on forums such as this that i could do it myself and try to get away from Skills Train as fast as possible.


    I am now aged 19 and i am studying for my A+ by myself. I enjoy the course but something has got me really worried lately. I have been looking for jobs that my A+ could open doors to that would keep me afloat while i study higher qualifications like the MCP, MCSA ect, and i can't find anything! I live in West London and have been actively looking for PC repair technician/help desk jobs and have turned up zilch. Any mildly relevant jobs seemed to have a bucket load of requirements like a degree in computer science or equivalent or an array of 4 letter certifications that i have never even heard of. All i want to do is to start supporting myself and take the initiative!

    As many of the kind users on this forum have already got the certifications that i seek, may i ask them their perspective on my current situation? Am i doing the right thing in persuing the A+, N+, MCP and MCSA or should i be focusing on A Levels to get in to University to do Computer Science? I should add that i am passionate about technology and computers. I enjoy nothing more than building and tweaking my PC and troubleshooting my friends/relatives machines. Nothing would make me happier than to become part of the IT industry and make the people who have supported me over the last few years proud.

    What jobs could i look for with an A+ and N+?

    Any help, advice or tips would be greatly appreciated.

  2. greenbrucelee
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    greenbrucelee Zettabyte Poster

    Hi Welcome :)

    First of all you should be looking at entry level positions with A+ and N+ that is trainee positions where you don't need experience although knowledge is needed.

    You could try looking in pc repair shops or something along those lines to get you some experience.

    having a degree isn't a necessaty not everyone with a degree gets a job.

    IT is very hard to get into in the first place it's a case of try try and try again.

    I didn't do very well at my GCSEs but I ended up doing what used to be called YTS (youth training scheme) and that course I did various NVQs like IT level 1 & 2 and business administration. This enabled me to go to college to do a GNVQ in IT and then after that I did a HND at Leeds.

    Maybe you could enquire about a similar thing at your local college and see if you can get a couple of NVQs or GNVQ to help you on your way.

    Good luck
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, Security+, 70-270
    WIP: 70-620 or 70-680?
  3. del_port

    del_port Byte Poster

    I'd agree about pc repair shops,an A+ certificate is fine to get work there.
    I also know what the poster is talking about,any job advert i've seen doesn't mention the A+ ,it's normally microsoft qualifications that are mentioned.
    Certifications: A+ and MCDST 70-271
    WIP: mcdst 272
  4. cyphertheory

    cyphertheory Bit Poster

    you may find that working on a technical helpdesk might be a way in, IBM, EDS and Fujitsu seem to be the bigger players in that kind of thing, and a lot of companies outsource to them. drop them a copy of your CV and see what happens

    you should be proud that you have the drive to do the things that you set your mind to, lots of people in similar situations to yourself give up. so crack on and best of luck to you!
    Certifications: MCDST, Network+ C&G NVQ lvl 3
    WIP: 70-682 I think :P
  5. dino66uk

    dino66uk Nibble Poster

    Hello Tim,

    Although i dont have much advice to give you, you seem like a very determind person with a lot of drive, just be patient and study hard, and most of all dont give up!
    Good things come to those who put in hardwork and effort!
    Certifications: A+ CCENT
    WIP: ICND 2
  6. TmWaddell

    TmWaddell New Member

    Thanks for the constructive replies all... It means a lot.

    As soon as i have my A+ (hopefully Feb), i will be actively looking round all the tech shops (PC world, The Tech Guys, Help Desk support ect ect ect) for any tech jobs available. Looks like i might have to get my hands dirty before i can make it in the big leagues.

    Hopefully in 1 years time i will have gone from having no qualifications to my name to having A+, N+ and MCP all off my own back... I think i want to become a network engineer.
  7. TmWaddell

    TmWaddell New Member

    I have also been looking up the route to Higher National Diplomas.... I think that's the way the government wants the education system to turn..... So i'll keep my eyes open to any opportunities i get to do a HND.
  8. greenbrucelee
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    greenbrucelee Zettabyte Poster

    you'l have to start at the bottom before getting to Network engineer status, but a good idea to geth the A+,N+ and MCDST under your belt and a job if poss.

    Have a look at your local college, you could maybe do a part time HND or something whilst studying for the A+
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, Security+, 70-270
    WIP: 70-620 or 70-680?
  9. Sparky
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    Sparky Zettabyte Poster Moderator

    Takes time to get to Network Engineer level mate. 8)
    Certifications: MSc MCSE MCSA:M MCSA:S MCITP:EA MCTS(x5) Security+ Network+ A+
    WIP: Office 365, Server 2016, CEH
  10. pete.grant

    pete.grant Byte Poster

    Hi Tim,

    Have you considered searching for apprenticeships after you complete your A+ studying? This may seem a little off-putting at first due to the fact that it will add and additional 2-3 years of being 'at the bottom' however, I cannot emphasise enough how beneficial the scheme has been for me.

    I got an Apprentice IT Technician job at the age of 18 working for a leading international airport in the UK. I am now 22 and have since been promoted to the position of Terminal Systems Engineer but in the time I have worked for my employer I have gained a Modern Apprenticeship in IT Services and Development (Level 3) as well as the following qualifications:

    A+ IT Technician
    Certified Ethical Hacker
    Certified Penetration Testing Specialist
    CIW Security Analyst
    ITIL v3 Foundation
    MCSA: Security on Windows Server 2003

    All of the above was funded by my employer and they continue to support me in any additional learning I wish to undertake (I am currently studying towards CCNA). The only pre-requisite for the Apprentice job was someone who had a keen interest in IT and a willingness to learn. I appreciate that these types of positions may be few and far between but give it some thought and continue with your studies - it will all pay off in the end! Best of luck to you.
    Certifications: A+ IT Technician, CCENT, CEH, CPTS, CIW Security Analyst, ITIL v3 Foundation, Master CIW Administrator, MCITP (Windows Server 2008:SA), MCSA on Windows Server 2008, MCSA:Security on Windows Server 2003, MCTS (70-648, 70-652), Network+, SCNS, Security+, Server+
  11. TmWaddell

    TmWaddell New Member

    Thanks for the helpful advice everyone. I have decided to to a 9 month access course, then go for a higher national diploma. I was speaking to one of the techs who was networking my local doctors surgery and he said that the HND is more focused towards IT related jobs and that seems to be a lot of peoples views. So here's what i have planned for 2009:

    Access to HND/Computer Science - starts in September
    and then either a degree or HND... probably HND

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