September’s Featured TechSmart KC Student
“I’m a recent transplant to Kansas City, MO from Stillwater, OK and have really enjoyed exploring the city so far. Prior to coming to Centriq, I went to Oklahoma State University where I received a Bachelor of Science in Animal Science with a focus on animal biotechnology and, later, a Masters in Science in Entomology. After graduation, I worked in customer service and laboratory-based jobs, both of which taught me a lot about teamwork, meticulous record keeping, and time management. My education and science-based work experience taught me how to be detail-oriented, a quick learner and utilize critical thinking. While I went to school for science, computers have always been a big part of my life. I grew up with computers, starting with Windows 3.1 and DOS. I built several gaming computers as I got older, and have always been the “IT guy” for family and friends – always the one to troubleshoot any problems. After some time in the world of science, I realized my passion was with computers. In IT, I finally feel like I’ve found a career that can keep me challenged intellectually and will also allow me to develop as a professional. I’m looking forward to seeing what the future holds for me after Centriq.”
Q: Why did you decide to come to Centriq?
A: Being new to Kansas City, I hadn’t heard Centriq’s radio ads like most of my classmates. I found out about the program from a friend who recently started in IT and had several co-workers who had gone through the IT Administrator program. They all spoke very highly of it and felt like it gave them the skills, training, and certificates they needed to get their foot in door. Wanting to change careers, that sounded exactly like what I was looking for. All of the instructors I have had at Centriq have been so helpful in guiding me through the basics of server management. I had a fair amount of computer experience and know-how previously, but had never really had much experience dealing with servers, domains, or more of the higher-level administrative features. The teachers made this an easily accessible topic and took time to explain concepts that could have been difficult to learn on my own. The small class sizes help each student be heard and allows for more interaction between students and teachers.
Q: What class has been your favorite so far?
A: My favorite class so far has been IT Administrator 6, which lets me put all the pieces together that we have been learning in the program. When I am setting up the network, I like to know exactly what’s happening and determine how the routers and other devices integrated into the domain need to be set up to have communication between the various subnets. Subnetting was completely new to me when I started the track, but I quickly figured it out after recognizing the patterns involved. I really like determining optimum subnets based on number of networks or hosts needed. The class I’m most looking forward to next is Security+, as I know how important Information Security is currently, and the future, and think that could be a fulfilling career for me.
Q: What do you hope to do after Centriq?
A: I have really enjoyed all the networking we have learned at Centriq but I think security could be interesting and fun. I am looking forward to taking the Security+ class to get a stronger background in the subject. I’m hopeful that, after taking the course, I will be able to determine a clear path for myself between a networking/ systems path or security-based path. I’m certain, regardless of my decision, that my experience using problem solving and critical thinking will make me a valuable asset to any company. I feel well-equipped for any challenges thrown at me, and am confident that I will be able to make a smooth transition onto this new career path.
Q: What other interests do you have?
A: Outside of Centriq, my interests include: scuba diving, video games, and traveling. I only recently started scuba diving and it has been so much fun. I’ve swam with sea turtles and manta rays in Hawaii, and cage-dived with great white sharks in South Africa. I’m also slowly crossing countries off my list around the world and would like to someday have visited them all. I love trying new foods and meeting new people everywhere I go. I think this global awareness has helped shape me as a person. Whenever I’m at home though I’m usually playing games on my PC I built or watching Netflix.