Monday, January 05, 2015

Learning and Training

I've just about completed 10 years in the corporate world. Since leaving campus, opportunities for formal studying and training have been difficult to come by. You have to have a plan, be dedicated, and make the time, while being sure to be fair and balance life, family and work.

As I look back, I realise I should have studied more. Here is a quick look at what I have done so far:

  • 2005 - 2007: At ECN, I did no formal training. I suppose I was just happy to be finally done with exams after 15 years or so.
  • 2008 - 2010:  Early in 2008 just after I joined, I decided I wanted to do more studying. I found out about a MSc Eng in Telecoms that Wits was offering. Some of the guys had completed while still at Wits before coming to work. I planned to complete it over 3 years. The first half of the year was for the course work and lectures, and the 2nd half of the year for research. I did two courses in 2008, and two courses in 2009. Each course lasted 6 weeks, with lectures of 3 hours, two days a week. I used to wake up at 3am to study, come in to work at 7am, leave for lectures at 8:30, and come back at lunch, and stay till late. 3 hour exam at the end of each course! When I told my manager that I was going to make up for all the lost work he said "I dont care what hours you do, just finish the work". Awesome!!! After 2 years of studying most weekends, I gave up. Best decision I made, with absolutely no regrets. Family is more important than this.
    • During the same time at MTN, I did a one day Time Management course offered off-site. I still remember some of the things I learned, and have been practicing on it. 
    • I also did a one-week F5 BigIP Load-Balancer support engineer course
    • Ericsson GSM one-week course
    • SmartTrust DP support engineer one week course
    • I was scheduled for an Oracle DB one-week course, but my resignation meant I could note make it
  • 2011 - 2013: Two major training events at Accenture. Core Consulting School in Chicago in March 2011 - this is one of mandatory schools. They teach the Accenture methodology, primarily for Project Management and client interaction. Very good learning experience - about 300 similar skilled people from all over the world for a week.
    • The other major one was Technology Architecture school in London. Very awesome learning experience
    • TMForum training - one week
    • I also self-studied towards Cisco CCNA1 in May 2011, and CCNA2 during July 2011. In December 2011 and January 2012, I self-studied CCDA
  • 2013 - 2015: During December 2013 at IS I self-studied SIP School SSCA
    • Formal CCNA SP 1 training for a week, and the exam the next week.
    • During December 2014 / January 2015, self studied EMC Information and Storage Management. Exam coming soon I hope
    • I also did a on-line VCE Associate course with exam, that took about 6 hours in December
I hope to do a VMWare course and Exam this year, as well as complete CCNA SP 2.
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