PDA

View Full Version : Question about Computer-Related Careers


Moooo
08-02-2006, 01:53 PM
Okay, so I don't know much about computers anymore, but about 5 years ago I was really good with them. All my friends say I have an ability to catch on to things quickly.

That being said, I was thinking a lot lately about doing something like that for a living. I work in a big company and we have a guy who takes care of all our computer-related problems. But my boss gets mad at me cause I want to fix it, but I'm not supposed to. Sometimes I can without him knowing about it, but he doesn't want me to mess something up even more.

This got me to thinking that it might be something I'd like to do with my life. I'm a psych major right now, but I question what I can do with it in my life (it's all or nothing). Computers are always there, always messing up, and since I actually ENJOY the problem-solving of it (and I am very patient, also), it might be something that would make me happy.

So my question is, what does someone do to get into a job like this. I don't want to be a programmer. I want to have a good comprehension of things like servers, OSs, and the like. They have a CIS major at the 4-year school in town, and at the school I go to they have a variety of Associate's programs (CIS, Computer Repair, and Networking Technology), though I don't know if that would be sufficient education.

Any help would be AWESOME

Moooo

Bootlegged
08-02-2006, 01:55 PM
Your best bet is to move to Banglore and get in line.

DaKCMan AP
08-02-2006, 02:02 PM
You could get into a CIS or Computer Engineering program. In computer engineering you could get into computer architecture, computer organization and then get into the networking, database courses. It depends on the degree program and each one is a little different.

kepp
08-02-2006, 02:03 PM
So my question is, what does someone do to get into a job like this. I don't want to be a programmer. I want to have a good comprehension of things like servers, OSs, and the like. They have a CIS major at the 4-year school in town, and at the school I go to they have a variety of Associate's programs (CIS, Computer Repair, and Networking Technology), though I don't know if that would be sufficient education.

Any help would be AWESOME

Moooo
If you're talking about Missouri State (SMSU during my days there), the CIS degree isn't really what you're looking for. I got a CSC major which is more technical and CIS is more business-oriented (again, when I was there). I seem to remember they also had a "Technology" degree. It was separate from both CSC and CIS. That maybe more of what you're looking for.

Although, I have a good friend who got an assoc. degree from Devry and now is a top-dog type IT guy for MU. Maybe, for what you're talking about, a two-year degree would be better. Couple that with an MCSE or CISCO certification.

Moooo
08-02-2006, 02:08 PM
If you're talking about Missouri State (SMSU during my days there), the CIS degree isn't really what you're looking for. I got a CSC major which is more technical and CIS is more business-oriented (again, when I was there). I seem to remember they also had a "Technology" degree. It was separate from both CSC and CIS. That maybe more of what you're looking for.

Although, I have a good friend who got an assoc. degree from Devry and now is a top-dog type IT guy for MU. Maybe, for what you're talking about, a two-year degree would be better. Couple that with an MCSE or CISCO certification.

I want a good job working in the IT department. I want to be able to know whats going on with whatever business's servers, apps, and so on.

I really have problems putting into words what I'm looking for. I did mean MSU, but I don't understand CIS being too business-oriented. I want to work in a business setting, is that what you mean? Or does it mean it teaches you a more personal level of business interaction?

Moooo

Saulbadguy
08-02-2006, 02:10 PM
I started off with a 2 year technical degree, and A+ Certification. I did break/fix work. Start there, and you can move on up.

kepp
08-02-2006, 02:22 PM
I want a good job working in the IT department. I want to be able to know whats going on with whatever business's servers, apps, and so on.

I really have problems putting into words what I'm looking for. I did mean MSU, but I don't understand CIS being too business-oriented. I want to work in a business setting, is that what you mean? Or does it mean it teaches you a more personal level of business interaction?

Moooo
Sorry, what I mean is that the CIS degree was oriented towards business-type programming (COBOL, etc) when I was there. But, IIRC, it also taught a lot about business apps and so forth. You won't get any hardware/networking type of stuff with it though.

seclark
08-02-2006, 02:22 PM
if you don't mind working in high places(150' and up) in 100degree heat, i might be able to help you out.
sec

Moooo
08-02-2006, 02:24 PM
Sorry, what I mean is that the CIS degree was oriented towards business-type programming (COBOL, etc) when I was there. But, IIRC, it also taught a lot about business apps and so forth. You won't get any hardware/networking type of stuff with it though.

Cool. So it directs you for a career of maybe business programming? Okay, that wouldn't be what I'm looking for.

Thank you very much, sir. I'll talk to people at my Community college and see if the Networking degree would be better or the CIS degree for an IT job.

Moooo

jidar
08-02-2006, 02:35 PM
You probably don't want programming. Honestly, the industry is flooded with people who are "good with computers" then got a degree because of it. And as far as I can tell, every good programmer knows how to program before they ever take a course. If it's something you're built for, you should fall into it on your own without needing any classes.

Aside from programming though, there is a lot you can do as far as IT and administration.

StcChief
08-02-2006, 02:37 PM
With alot of IT dev/support being 'outsourced' to India etc....
Big companies looking for competative edge by off loading tasks.... Need to have coordinators and Proj Mgrs in US seems to be the trend. Define the work to be done and monitor it.


Smaller firms / companies won't likely do this, cost, risk, etc.

going on Business Side as BA or PM would be good,
The IT infastructure, etc even DBA, Programming work is being outsourced. Server Mgmt maybe not as much.
Though leveraging the 24 day for maint will have appeal.

Iowanian
08-02-2006, 02:43 PM
There are Computer related careers outside of IT.

Have you looked into CAD Drafting?
Are you familiar with GIS?

SquirrellyBastard
08-02-2006, 03:04 PM
I graduated with a Bachelors Degree in Business Administration with emphasis in Management Information Systems and I have worked in the IT department for 2 different companies.
My major consisted of a couple Visual Basic programming classes, a database class and a network class, the rest where business oriented classes.

Bootlegged
08-02-2006, 03:48 PM
Project Management Institute. Look for it in about 5 years.

BigRedChief
08-02-2006, 03:56 PM
Do a search for IT on here. Jspchief started a thread two weeks ago and it had pages of good advise in it about how to decide what to do in I.T..

Moooo
08-02-2006, 08:46 PM
Do a search for IT on here. Jspchief started a thread two weeks ago and it had pages of good advise in it about how to decide what to do in I.T..

Awesome, thanks guys!

I know a lot of people fall into computers also. I was thinking about doing that or accounting/finance. I'm good at numbers and have a lot of patience. If I go that route I'll only be able to cat my AA, so at least for a while it would have to be sufficient.

Moooo

ricardo4432
08-02-2006, 09:11 PM
Just remember, most regular IT guys really don't make that much. So, if that's a concern, then you might want to look at another field. :)

Moooo
08-02-2006, 09:36 PM
Just remember, most regular IT guys really don't make that much. So, if that's a concern, then you might want to look at another field. :)

I'd like to at some time, but right now, I'm quite modest financially.

I just want to know what sort of degrees get you where.

Moooo

alnorth
08-02-2006, 11:01 PM
I graduated with a degree in computer science, but late in my Junior year I realised a couple things. 1) Although I was good at programming, I did not enjoy it. 2) Even if I did want to be a programmer, I realised the job market looked very tough, and I wanted more stability.

Luckily around that time I discovered the Actuarial profession, it sounded cool as hell, I passed a couple exams, and now I'm in an extremely stable field and love my job.

Moooo
08-02-2006, 11:07 PM
I graduated with a degree in computer science, but late in my Junior year I realised a couple things. 1) Although I was good at programming, I did not enjoy it. 2) Even if I did want to be a programmer, I realised the job market looked very tough, and I wanted more stability.

Luckily around that time I discovered the Actuarial profession, it sounded cool as hell, I passed a couple exams, and now I'm in an extremely stable field and love my job.

Cool. I'm balancing between Networking and the Accounting/finance sort of work. But as a same note on both, I really don't know what sort of job gets what. The one thing I hate about my job is that it never ends. I know no job really ends, but whether I make one sale or 50 sales, I still get "good job, now make another!" Thatys why I'd like to work with computers and manage servers (if that's what you call it). You may even get the same type of problems, but you still actually get progress. This is why I thought something like Accounting or finance might appeal to me too, but I don't know what they do.

Moooo

luv
08-02-2006, 11:37 PM
Moving from people to PC's, huh?

Moooo
08-02-2006, 11:41 PM
Moving from people to PC's, huh?

I just got to thinking a lot the last few days. I saw a few people I know who have a Psych degree and it doesn't do anything except for show companies you have some degree. And then a guy I work with's last day of college is tomorrow (at least for his bachelor's), and he was talking about some of the jobs friends of his have gotten.

I like computers a lot too. I'm on them constantly, bored out of my mind. If I could have a career that worked with that, that would be sweet (though I'm well aware its still hard work).

Moooo

luv
08-02-2006, 11:48 PM
I just got to thinking a lot the last few days. I saw a few people I know who have a Psych degree and it doesn't do anything except for show companies you have some degree. And then a guy I work with's last day of college is tomorrow (at least for his bachelor's), and he was talking about some of the jobs friends of his have gotten.

I like computers a lot too. I'm on them constantly, bored out of my mind. If I could have a career that worked with that, that would be sweet (though I'm well aware its still hard work).

Moooo
You are very logically minded. I think you'd be good at it. If you have the patience to work with people, you'll need that with pc's too. Only difference is, the garbage that comes out of a pc is the garbage you've put into it.

Moooo
08-02-2006, 11:57 PM
You are very logically minded. I think you'd be good at it. If you have the patience to work with people, you'll need that with pc's too. Only difference is, the garbage that comes out of a pc is the garbage you've put into it.

:) Very true... Thanks luv. Despite my logic, I tend to overanalyze things. You come in here, and in 3 sentences totally put it in perspective. :)

I still don't know if I should do that or get a job in accounting or finance. I have this horrible fear of getting a degree and not having a job (I know, and I'm a psych major?). Money isn't a HUGE motivating factor (though it sounds nice), but job security is BY FAR my primary concern.

Moooo

luv
08-03-2006, 12:01 AM
:) Very true... Thanks luv. Despite my logic, I tend to overanalyze things.

I still don't know if I should do that or get a job in accounting or finance. I have this horrible fear of getting a degree and not having a job (I know, and I'm a psych major?). Money isn't a HUGE motivating factor (though it sounds nice), but job security is BY FAR my primary concern.

Moooo
I wanted to be an accountant all through high school. I worked a CPA after high school. Figured out that I had enough stress accounting for my money, let alone keeping track of someone else's. People will continue to rely on computers, and people will still make money. I'd say whatever of those you choose, you'll find job security. If I could go back, I'd major in English. I'd be limited to being an author, an editor, or a teacher. Most people think of me as the teacher type. Maybe that's a sign.

Moooo
08-03-2006, 12:05 AM
I wanted to be an accountant all through high school. I worked a CPA after high school. Figured out that I had enough stress accounting for my money, let alone keeping track of someone else's. People will continue to rely on computers, and people will still make money. I'd say whatever of those you choose, you'll find job security. If I could go back, I'd major in English. I'd be limited to being an author, an editor, or a teacher. Most people think of me as the teacher type. Maybe that's a sign.

It is. Its called patience, and the more I encounter people, the more I realize its in shorter and shorter commodity.

Moooo

Moooo
08-03-2006, 02:49 AM
OKAY! I thnk I found what I was looking for. The name of the job that the guy at work does is "network administrator." I know that's a common position, and I have known a lot of them at different places, but I never knew their exact title. I even found an associates degree for Networking Technology at my school.

So, will this do any good? Will that associates be enough to get me working in companies. I don't expect to make 15-20 an hour or anything (10-12 would be beautiful), but I would like a career that allows for that sort of growth, and allows me to use my problem-solving skills towards something better than selling crap. By far my biggest concern is job security. With outsourcing and the computer world changing so quickly, I wanna make sure I pick something that will keep some sort of demand.

Here's the listing of what classes the degree offers along with a degree description , so you'll have a better idea of what it does...

Employment in computer networking ranges from assembling and repairing computers, to installation of network copper and fiber cabling systems, and attaching the computers to a network. Network technicians may also install network servers and server operating systems as well as troubleshoot and repair problems on these networks. Network administrators oversee the functioning of all network-attached devices including printers and publishing systems. Graduates of the networking technology program will qualify for entry level positions as network technicians, computer technicians and as network cable installers.

Program Specific Courses:

NET 160 Introduction to Networking
NET 175 Network Routing and Remote Access
NET 225 Windows Client Server
NET 235 Network Communications & Cabling
NET 240 Scripting Languages for System Admin
NET 250 LINUX Networking
NET 251 Network Operating Syst and Apps
NET 255 Network Security
NET 260 Advanced Networking Systems
NET 290 Co-op Ed/Intern/Related Elective
CIT 120 Intro to Computer Information Technology
ELT 165 Computer Hardware
TEC 285 Occupational Seminar

And here's a PDF of everything in detail, if you're that bored :) (3 pages)

http://www.otc.edu/students/courses/degrees/documents/networking.pdf

I know I've done said this, but anyone's help would be AWESOME at this point.

Moooo

Miles
08-03-2006, 02:55 AM
This got me to thinking that it might be something I'd like to do with my life. I'm a psych major right now, but I question what I can do with it in my life (it's all or nothing). Computers are always there, always messing up, and since I actually ENJOY the problem-solving of it (and I am very patient, also), it might be something that would make me happy.




Sounds like you may like some abstract stuff with psych and problem solving. Have you considered law school?

Moooo
08-03-2006, 02:57 AM
Have you considered law school?

Yes. If I went that route I'd definitely be more of a contract lawyer or something. The idea of prosecuting or defending someone doesn't appeal to me, even for a parking ticket.

I'm not waist deep in psych classes or anything. Its definitely not too late to turn around for me.

Moooo

Miles
08-03-2006, 02:59 AM
Yes. If I went that route I'd definitely be more of a contract lawyer or something. The idea of prosecuting or defending someone doesn't appeal to me, even for a parking ticket.

I'm not waist deep in psych classes or anything. Its definitely not too late to turn around for me.

Moooo

Doesn't really matter what your major is if you are actually thinking about it. Criminal law is a somewhat smalller field of law if you are worried about that.

Moooo
08-03-2006, 03:04 AM
Doesn't really matter what your major is if you are actually thinking about it. Criminal law is a somewhat smalller field of law if you are worried about that.

I honsetly don't think I would be up for it. I'd like to say I could do it, and I probably could if I really wanted to, but the idea doesn't interest me enough to go through that much school. There's not enough incentive for me. I'm amodest minimalist who is looking for a job that will give me a sense of accomplishment when I go home.

Computers make sense to me.

Moooo

MahiMike
08-03-2006, 06:48 AM
Your best bet is to move to Banglore and get in line.

ROFL

MahiMike
08-03-2006, 06:53 AM
I got my degree from ECPI in KC (used to be on 39th and Pennsylvania). I wish I had gone to Devry but it got me in the door which is all that matters. Been doing this schtick for 22 yrs now. Currently doing SAP applications. If I were to start today I think I'd get either of the computer related degrees, work a yr or 2 then start my own Network cabling company. They can't outsource that one! Which by the way, ANY white collar job in America today is up for grabs if you don't have to physically be there on site (i.e. computers, networking, accounting, etc.) so be careful what you pick.

Phobia
08-03-2006, 07:13 AM
Network Admin is a pretty tough job. You don't just fall out of bed into that job one day. Most admins start in helpdesk or on the PC side and work their way into an admin position. I used to be a network admin in high demand but then one day Microsoft paid Banyan enough money that they decided to stop making their Vines networking product. How pathetic is that? They didn't even get bought out, they rolled over for a few million.

StcChief
08-03-2006, 07:22 AM
If your going the Admin route. Network Admin/System Admin better have Unix/Linux/Window Server skills
Cisco Cert. A+, etc. Working your way up likely the only way. Even with certs. Small company might take a chance with lower pay.

beavis
08-03-2006, 09:21 AM
If I had it to do over again, I'd pick a career field where I didn't have to look at a computer monitor all day. But hey, that's just me.

luv
08-03-2006, 12:14 PM
Network Admin is a pretty tough job. You don't just fall out of bed into that job one day. Most admins start in helpdesk or on the PC side and work their way into an admin position. I used to be a network admin in high demand but then one day Microsoft paid Banyan enough money that they decided to stop making their Vines networking product. How pathetic is that? They didn't even get bought out, they rolled over for a few million.
Our network admins work ALOT. If you find a place to work that only runs from 9-5, then you might get to go home at a decent hour. We are open 24/5. Our admins are on call for all of those hours. Currently, we are fighting a worm. Anytime, we get any sort of virus threat, our guys are there almost 24/7. We have a R&D department. Guys who develop software and such. They're pretty much 9-5'ers. Or client tech support. People who use our software/equipment (we are a middle man for Bell & Howell scanners) call in when they have questions/problems. We deal with medical records though. Hospitals are open 24/7, so our CTS group is also a division that's on call. If you want a 9-5, IMO, you're best bet would be software development or programming.

StcChief
08-03-2006, 12:58 PM
Our network admins work ALOT. If you find a place to work that only runs from 9-5, then you might get to go home at a decent hour. We are open 24/5. Our admins are on call for all of those hours. Currently, we are fighting a worm. Anytime, we get any sort of virus threat, our guys are there almost 24/7. We have a R&D department. Guys who develop software and such. They're pretty much 9-5'ers. Or client tech support. People who use our software/equipment (we are a middle man for Bell & Howell scanners) call in when they have questions/problems. We deal with medical records though. Hospitals are open 24/7, so our CTS group is also a division that's on call. If you want a 9-5, IMO, you're best bet would be software development or programming.

Sure..Right...since when. Development schedules always figure past 40 / week. Weekends and testing at times too.
Varies with Dev shop though.

Only good thing is not on call... rarely get the mid nite call.

The post release coverage can be a issue if system testing doesn't catch a problem.

luv
08-03-2006, 01:25 PM
Sure..Right...since when. Development schedules always figure past 40 / week. Weekends and testing at times too.
Varies with Dev shop though.

Only good thing is not on call... rarely get the mid nite call.

The post release coverage can be a issue if system testing doesn't catch a problem.
The only good thing I can see about being on-call is that you get paid extra for the nights/weekends when you have the pager. At least they do at the company I work for.

Moooo
08-03-2006, 01:33 PM
Sure..Right...since when. Development schedules always figure past 40 / week. Weekends and testing at times too.
Varies with Dev shop though.

Only good thing is not on call... rarely get the mid nite call.

The post release coverage can be a issue if system testing doesn't catch a problem.

Okay, so here's the classes again. But if I'm getting this straight what you're telling me is it doesn't matter how long of a program it is, its what it certifies you in?

NET 160 Introduction to Networking 4
NET 175 Network Routing and Remote Access 4
NET 225 Windows Client Server 4
NET 235 Network Communications & Cabling 3
NET 240 Scripting Languages for System Admin 4
NET 250 LINUX Networking 4
NET 251 Network Operating Syst and Apps 4
NET 255 Network Security 4
NET 260 Advanced Networking Systems 4
NET 290 Co-op Ed/Intern/Related Elective 1-3
CIT 120 Intro to Computer Information
Technology 3
ELT 165 Computer Hardware 4
TEC 285 Occupational Seminar 1

So basically, I should call them up and see what they'll certify me in? If they don't do the actual certification, how difficult is it to get it on your own? Is it expensive, even if you've taken the classes to know how to do everything already?

Moooo

StcChief
08-03-2006, 02:25 PM
Okay, so here's the classes again. But if I'm getting this straight what you're telling me is it doesn't matter how long of a program it is, its what it certifies you in?



So basically, I should call them up and see what they'll certify me in? If they don't do the actual certification, how difficult is it to get it on your own? Is it expensive, even if you've taken the classes to know how to do everything already?

Moooo
the classes prepare you with IT knowledge how things work. Should prep you for Cert Test.
The Certs (Cisco, A+, etc) varies depending on how many levels (tests) are required before a Cert is issued to the test taker.
Tests cost vary ~$100/test attempt.

The Cert really gets you a leg up for resume/interview. Experience counts. Get the experience you won't jump in and make 50K with cert alone.

This info can be found on Google.....

My background is in Software Development, specializing in Oracle Dev.
Database design.

Moooo
08-03-2006, 02:30 PM
the classes prepare you with IT knowledge how things work. Should prep you for Cert Test.
The Certs (Cisco, A+, etc) varies depending on how many levels (tests) are required before a Cert is issued to the test taker.
Tests cost vary ~$100/test attempt.

The Cert really gets you a leg up for resume/interview. Experience counts. Get the experience you won't jump in and make 50K with cert alone.

This info can be found on Google.....

My background is in Software Development, specializing in Oracle Dev.
Database design.

One last thing and I'll quit, what do I google for? My problem is I don't know the words for everything (the jargon if you will) to do searches for myself.

Everyone who helped me, THANK YOU!!! You may have very well helped build a better Moooo.

Moooo

StcChief
08-03-2006, 02:32 PM
Cisco Certification, A+ Certification, Network Certifcation
Unix/Linux Sys Admin Network Admin you name the
IT buzz word and Cert.

Moooo
08-03-2006, 02:34 PM
Cisco Certification, A+ Certification, Network Certifcation
Unix/Linux Sys Admin Network Admin you name the
IT buzz word and Cert.

Sweeeeeet. I'm guessing trying to get certified in something like that without classes is near impossible.

I'll read up a lot and talk to the people at school.

Moooo

StcChief
08-03-2006, 03:30 PM
Sweeeeeet. I'm guessing trying to get certified in something like that without classes is near impossible.

I'll read up a lot and talk to the people at school.

MooooDepends on how you learn...Class rooms are for some
others are able to put a network together at home by books
study, work their own labs, disipilined enough, READ, take the tests
pass get a job and move on.

Others need to be force feed by a teacher. Adult centered night class
are probably a way to push the envelope if your really good teachers
and want to succeed. (these guys are in the business do this to help and pickup extra cash)

Others want a sheep skin and hope they learn enought to go
further. It's all about what YOU DO....

DRU
08-04-2006, 03:43 PM
I got my job (web developer/computer guy) just because people know I'm a computer geek. I get calls from friends/family a number of times almost every single day. Eventually, one of those calls was a full time job offer.

Screw the school. Nothing but wortheless debt. I've got an entire wealth of knowledge in electronic documentation you could simply d/l and read and get more out of it than paying thousands for school.

As long as you're a "geek" and people know it they don't care if you went to school.

StcChief
08-04-2006, 07:26 PM
I got my job (web developer/computer guy) just because people know I'm a computer geek. I get calls from friends/family a number of times almost every single day. Eventually, one of those calls was a full time job offer.

Screw the school. Nothing but wortheless debt. I've got an entire wealth of knowledge in electronic documentation you could simply d/l and read and get more out of it than paying thousands for school.

As long as you're a "geek" and people know it they don't care if you went to school.
Don't fool yourself.... When the economy and other factors
make employer's choose between a Guy with Degree and Experience
and One without.....

It does depend on the job/company and what you are doing.

Some jobs may not require a CS/MIS degree.
Others it's another differentiator like certs. Software Development, Programming require skills that may/maynot be aquired without some education.

Knowing a Tool set is not a substitute for understanding how things work.

Moooo
08-04-2006, 08:39 PM
Don't fool yourself.... When the economy and other factors
make employer's choose between a Guy with Degree and Experience
and One without.....

It does depend on the job/company and what you are doing.

Some jobs may not require a CS/MIS degree.
Others it's another differentiator like certs. Software Development, Programming require skills that may/maynot be aquired without some education.

Knowing a Tool set is not a substitute for understanding how things work.

My idea is to get a Networking Technology Associates that will educate me enough to get certifications, then go back for a CIS Bachelor's if what I'm looking for in life requires it. I'm only 2 credits away from an Assiciates in General Studies, so if I do decide to go for another major it will only be the last 2 years of school.

Does anyone know any good message boards that address this sort of stuff? I have a ton of quesitons and I'd like to take it somewhere else, since that's not really the purpose of this place.

Moooo

luv
08-05-2006, 12:07 AM
http://groups.google.com/group/computers?lnk=gschg

I just Googled a few things. This is just one that came up that looked helpful.