Pursuing a MS in Computer Science (Boston University MET)

SteveFTSteveFT Users Awaiting Email Confirmation Posts: 149
I was fortunate enough to get my first job in November in Deskside Support. I'm the type of person who really enjoys learning, so I've been tackling everything I can. We had a Sys. Admin leave a few months ago. As a result, I was able to take over our Windows deployment (WDS + MDT 2012). That has been a good learning experience.

I'm stuck trying to figure out what to do next. I'm contracting at the moment, but hope to be hired on soon. My goal in the next year is to complete my MCSA 2008 and upgrade it to a MCSA 2012. I'd also like to knock out at least the CCENT. At this time I believe that my 3-5 year plan is to become a Sys. Admin. That being said, I've really enjoyed the small bit of networking stuff that I've been exposed to so far. I might consider looking for a NOC job in the future. The only part holding me back is the crazy schedule.

My question is whether I should pursue a MS in Computer Science to ensure that I am not limited by my degree in the future. I have a BS in Exercise Science. Last year I started pursuing a BS in IT. This only requires 10 courses (I've only completed 2). So far I have found it to not be particularly challenging. Likewise, there are few classes that will likely transfer to an MS in Computer Science (Intro to Programming, Data Structures, C++).

I found a MS in Computer Science at the BU MET school (Department of Computer Science » Boston University). There is a track for those with no CS background where you take five courses including C++, data structures, discrete math, and computer architecture. Then, the MS program is 10 courses. The courses are $1600 a whack, but in the summer they are $2400... If I only took one class at a time and avoided the summer session, it would take me 7 1/2 years. If I doubled up, I could get it done in 3.

The problem is this will inevitably take away from certification studies. Short term, I was thinking that another 1 1/2 years of experience plus the MCSA 2008/2012 and a CCNA could get me into a Sys Admin type role. Long term, I don't want to lose out on my dream job because I lack a Computer Science background. Right now I don't see myself going into software development, but I am interested in networking and process automation/scripting. A lot of these higher end position do seem to list Computer Science degree as a requirement.

Sorry for the long post, but do you think I should:
- Finish the 8 courses for the BS in IT and continue with certifications? The course load is easy and does not impair my certification studies much. Total cost for degree is $10k.

- Forget the BS and go for an MS in CIS/IT/MIS and continue with certifications. This might require some pre-requisites, so I'd assume somewhere around 11-13 courses and $18k.

- Go for the MS in Computer Science, which will likely take 3-7 years and $24,000.

- Online MS in Computer Science which may be cheaper and more convenient. The aforementioned BU program would add another 1.5 hour commute when I go to school.

I know that nobody can tell me what is best for me, but I'm really at a crossroad here. Thank you all in advance.
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