looking to enter the IT field...what certifications / education path would be best?

neurocompneurocomp Registered Users Posts: 1 ■□□□□□□□□□
hello all!

i graduated college 2 years ago with a BS in Neuroscience and minors in Computer Science and Biology.

I ended up working for a mobile app developer for awhile after graduation (part-time job during school turned into full-time afterwards) and I enjoyed it a lot, but there wasn't that much technical experience. Only more basic, high-level GUI-based stuff.

Well that company fell flat and I've been looking for a job for awhile now...and it's tough to say the least.

I've been thinking about how to get more into the computer career field, as I don't really want to pursue Neuroscience at the moment (but maybe if I can't get into IT work).

Sorry if that was tl;dr but here is my question:

What is (are) some great certification(s) that I can use to land a full-time entry-level IT job? What are the hottest job titles / fields right now?

Or should I somehow go back to school to take more courses in computer science to make it equivalent to a major in it (is that possible / acceptable?)

I've been looking into CompTIA and Red Hat certifications, but I'm honestly overwhelmed at all the choices and not sure which one I should choose to dive into, which will lead to the best job prospects, etc.

If it helps, I am looking for a job in the NJ/NY/PA/CT area.

I would really appreciate any/all help/suggestions on this matter.

And I really hope this thread is in the right section. Sorry if it's not. icon_rolleyes.gif

Thanks :)


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    dpsmooth15dpsmooth15 Banned Posts: 155
    I am going to give you my best advice for today February 24, 2014. If you are looking at jobs in those four states, go to indeed, careerjet, clearance jobs, dice etc etc and type in the position you are looking for, help desk, desktop support, LAN Support, NOC, or usually typing in Tier 1 or Tier 2 will work as a keyword. Once you find that entry level job, look at the certifications, and let them put you in the right direction, granted you can apply for jobs without being remotely qualified but…….usually the system will not hit or the recruiter will definitely not forward your resume to the company IF you are NOT qualified (exceptions to every rule). Ex. If I am Company A and I say recruiter Bill(getting paid) to find me X, Y, Z, Bill is NOT going to forward the resume to Company A with only X and Y, if you are not exactly what Company A is looking for. Some people say A+, Network+… me I dont say it at all…not saying I didn't do it, I am just saying I wouldn't suggest it, I would suggest Security+ first, or the CCENT CCNA route..
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    MacGuffinMacGuffin Member Posts: 241 ■■■□□□□□□□
    I agree with dpsmooth15, look at the job openings available where you live and see what they are looking for, then become what they are looking for. In my research I came to the conclusion that around here the big fields are virtualization, network security, and web development. I made a plan towards educating myself in those fields. The jobs you find in your area may be different.

    I studied computer engineering in college and I suspect you found like I did that college didn't fully prepare you for working as a software developer. You will be expected to learn on your own, or your employer expects to have to train you. What I've found is that employers are not as willing to train as they used to. I saw a lot of news articles to that effect in the last couple years so I don't think it's all in my head.

    I'm considering going back to school too. I'm looking at programs in software engineering and/or information security.

    I feel I should emphasize the distinction between computer science and software engineering. In my experience in college and in talking to people in both fields this distinction can be very important. Computer science is applied mathematics. I noticed my classmates in the computer science program took courses on math, algorithms, theory, concepts, and data structures, but there were no required courses to teach them good programming practices. Don't get me wrong, all those courses are important but they are also insufficient.

    Software engineering has most or all the same required courses of a computer science program but adds courses on the engineering process. Perhaps you learned that process in the course of your full time work, perhaps not. I'm fairly certain you did not take those courses while getting your computer science minor. In the schools I've looked at there are software engineering courses offered as electives to the computer science program.

    If you do go back to school I'd suggest considering courses on software engineering if you can find them. Some of what they teach may seem obvious, like that a project has a beginning, a middle, and an end, but it's all good practices that apply to a lot of things in life.
    MacGuffin - A plot device, an item or person that exists only to produce conflict among the characters within the story.
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