School, Work, Certifications

osJoeosJoe Member Posts: 61 ■■□□□□□□□□
How do you manage your time if you are in this type of situation, or do you just put certifications on hold to you get the degree you are seeking?


  • PishofPishof Member Posts: 193
    osJoe wrote: »
    How do you manage your time if you are in this type of situation, or do you just put certifications on hold to you get the degree you are seeking?

    Working 11-12 hour business days with an hour total commute each day. Attending WGU so that covers both certifications and school. If WGU were not online based, I could not be doing this at all.

    I get home around 7:30-8:30pm and go to bed around 11 waking up at 6:15 for work the next day. 150-210 minutes free time each day during the week, just enough to wind down, shower, eat dinner, and go to bed to repeat.

    Friday nights are for going out with friends, appeasing girlfriend, and the remaining weekend time is studying mixed with a bit of remote work.

    I manage through Trial by Fire! ... I can't wait until I graduate.

    Edit: How do people have the luxury of time to be bored?!!
    Courses Left for WGU BS - IT: NA:

    On to VCAP!
  • gosh1976gosh1976 Member Posts: 441
    It's not easy doing all three but luckily there is some overlap to all three. I can apply what I do at work to certifications and school and some of the classes I take at school directly apply to certain certifications including the cisco net academy classes I've already finished. I still manage to have a social life on the weekends as well as study time. Some weekends are dedicated to study and some dedicated to going out but generally I try to find time for some of both.

    I'm divorced and don't have a girlfriend so I don't have to worry about spending time with a significant other and it means I can make spur of the moment plans. I do need to figure out how to work some dating in there too though!
  • DevilsbaneDevilsbane Member Posts: 4,214 ■■■■■■■■□□
    It isn't easy, as others have said.

    M-F I work for 8 hours. If I have school (which usually only happens 1-2 days a week) then I'm home by 9. Still plenty of time for a couple hours of reading. On days with no school, I can come home and eat and watch a little TV before doing any work. Weekends are mostly open.

    As others have said, it isn't the work and school that get in the way, it is the friends and especially those of the female variety. Even with those things, you can still study for a couple hours several days a week.
    Decide what to be and go be it.
  • Bl8ckr0uterBl8ckr0uter Inactive Imported Users Posts: 5,031 ■■■■■■■■□□
    I work from 8-9am to 5-6pm with a 2 hour round trip (starting tomorrow actually icon_sad.gif ) School starts in two weeks but I managed to get it to just two days (7-10pm) during the week and saturday morning (8am-12pm). I think having a schedule and goals in mind are the key. You have 168 hours in a week. I've been slacking on my cert studies because I have been getting the house ready. After that, it's full steam ahead with school and certs icon_thumright.gif

    PS Another thing is being realistic so you don't set yourself up for failure. If you are working fulltime and schooling fulltime, you probably aren't going to have a ton of free time for certs or anything else. It's easy to get on this board and want to grab them all. Take your time and pace yourself. Set reasonable and affordable goals. These test aren't cheap! So use your money wisely.
  • cyberguyprcyberguypr Senior Member Mod Posts: 6,927 Mod
    The time is there. You you just have to play with it. I juggle wife , kid, work, friends, hobbies, school, side gigs and certs. For some people here setting a fixed schedule works best. Years ago I discovered that method doesn't work for me. Since mood varies one day I may feel like studying Cisco, doing school work or working on a side gig. The way I handle it is by establishing weekly goals. Example: complete 1 module/homework for school, study 1 chapter from the Cisco book, complete X task for one of my clients. As long as I know what needs to be done any given week and distribute the load, everything is golden.

    As gosh mentioned, use your down time wisely, either commute time or slow days at work. At the office I always have a PDF book minimized ready to come to life if things quiet down.
  • HypntickHypntick Member Posts: 1,451 ■■■■■■□□□□
    I work 8 to 5 Mon-Fri. However, I also do a lot of the after hours maintenance work (updates, firmware, patches etc.) so I usually have 1-2 hours of work still to go when I get home. I'm very happy to be paid overtime for this stuff and it's usually stuff that allows me to click a few things and wait for it to finish while I read on the side. Like some others, I do WGU so certs and school are combined, could never do it otherwise.
    WGU BS:IT Completed June 30th 2012.
    WGU MS:ISA Completed October 30th 2013.
  • whatthehellwhatthehell Member Posts: 920
    I say degree and certs at the same time -- BUT it is very important to balance your life with family, good friends, and lots of exercise (and a good woman too!).

    It's not easy, but well worth it, and you sleep a lot better at night because you are tired and, moreso, have a proper sense of accomplishment from the day.
    2017 Goals:
    [ ] Security + [ ] 74-409 [ ] CEH
    Future Goals:
  • osJoeosJoe Member Posts: 61 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Thanks for all the input guys! My main concern was letting my grades in school slip, or getting halfway through my studies and just abandon it because I have too much on my plate, however I'm going to go ahead and give it a try. I guess I will begin studying for CCNA tomorrow! :)
  • ThePrimetimerThePrimetimer Member Posts: 169 ■■■□□□□□□□
    I do the same as others here and do WGU for the degree and certs while working 45+ hours a week and juggle that with the wife and 8 month old. I work from 7:30 to 4:30 and am home by 5. Couple hours with the family and its studying by 7:30 or 8 until I go to bed around 11 or 12. So I only get about 5 to 6 hours a sleep a night.

    My motivation is that I only have a year left and I know where my degree and certs are gonna lead me. I can't wait to reach the point where I can have the job that provides the income to live comfortable and still have extra for retirement and fun.

    Plus I wanna show my son what his daddy has done and be proud of me :)
    "You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain't about how hard ya hit. It’s about how hard you can get it and keep moving forward. How much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done"
  • jamesleecolemanjamesleecoleman Member Posts: 1,899 ■■■■■□□□□□
    I just had to do what I needed to do to make things work out. I was in this situation two years ago. I didn't work full time but I went to school full time. The days I had to work, I would wake up, go to work, and then go to class. It was easy because I worked at school. The days I didn't work, I stayed home and studied. Having online classes helped too because instead of spending two to five hours in class I could cover the material quicker.
    WIP : | CISSP [2018] | CISA [2018] | CAPM [2018] | eCPPT [2018] | CRISC [2019] | TORFL (TRKI) B1 | Learning: | Russian | Farsi |
    *****You can fail a test a bunch of times but what matters is that if you fail to give up or not*****
  • DevilsbaneDevilsbane Member Posts: 4,214 ■■■■■■■■□□
    osJoe wrote: »
    Thanks for all the input guys! My main concern was letting my grades in school slip, or getting halfway through my studies and just abandon it because I have too much on my plate, however I'm going to go ahead and give it a try. I guess I will begin studying for CCNA tomorrow! :)

    Abandoning studies isn't a complete waste. When you come back you may need to start over, but you will quickly move back to where you were to begin with and probably develop a better understanding from the review.

    Good luck
    Decide what to be and go be it.
  • advanex1advanex1 CISSP, BSCSIA, CASP, MCSA 2016/2012, CCNA, CySA+, Security+, Network+, Project+, Server+, A+, ITIL Member Posts: 365 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Hey man, I understand where you're coming from. I'm currently deployed to Iraq right now and my schedule consists of..

    4:45 am - wake up
    5:15 - 6:30 am - PT
    6:30 - 7:30 am - shower and talk to my wife for about 30 minutes
    7:45 am - 9:00 pm - work
    9:00 pm - 11 pm - study
    11:30 pm - 12:00 - talk to wife and bed

    If you want something bad enough, you'll get it. I make up my sleep on sunday mornings when I don't have to be to work until 10 am. Otherwise, that's my schedule for 6 days a week.
    Currently Reading: CISM: All-in-One
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  • AkaricloudAkaricloud Member Posts: 938
    It's definitely possible to do.

    This previous semester I was working 30-40 hours/week as a Desktop Support Tech, attending WSU Online classes full time and managed to pick up a MCITP: W7.

    Now I'm taking full time classes again(finishing in December), working 40 hours a week doing helpdesk/desktop support work and just starting a part time sys admin job.

    If you can overlap them some that's great but just make sure to keep yourself happy and sane. If I didn't really enjoy my jobs and coworkers then there's no way that I'd be able to handle it.

    I generally wake up around 6am, work on some classwork and get ready for my full time job(8-5pm). Afterwards if I'm working at my other job I go there until late, late night. Otherwise I enjoy my free time until about 1am when I go to sleep.

    Weekends are either spent finishing up some classwork(rarely) or relaxing. I really don't mind the busy schedule and still manage to find time to have fun.
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