I want to start my IT career

+2 Kenneth Malicay · May 14, 2015
About me:

  • 4 years ago I went to college and studied information technology for 1 and a half year and there I learned c++ and java. (And I kind of excelled in my programming class but I dropped off college since I barely go to my minor classes so I figured I'm wasting money.)

  • I took a java course that includes database(mysql, oracle, excel). (I barely learned database)

  • These past few years I haven't been studying programming and now I'm rusty. Also I currently have no plan to pursue college.

  • These past few days I kind of been studying html, css and javascript from codecademy.

  • I live in Roanoke, VA.



What I want to do now is to get me back from that path again and get an IT career.

So my questions are:

  1. What programs do you recommend I use? And what are must haves? (I've used notepad++, eclipse and netbeans)

  2. Which certificates to get for entry level? (If you could include the difficulty and the impact on resume that would be great)

  3. What are the entry level jobs and what knowledge do I need for them? (troubleshooting?, programming?, etc.)

  4. What are the must learn stuff now? (what language, networking stuff, OS, etc.)



I'm really lost right now so anything you could tell me or help me with would be greatly appreciated. Thanks. :)

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+1 Alex Cassady · May 14, 2015
Hi Kenneth. Personally, I used Team Treehouse which I highly recommend. Codecademy is good as an introduction, but Treehouse provides more depth. As for starting a career, I have yet to do that. I'm currently freelancing, and I've almost finished my first client's website. Treehouse helped a lot, but should be supplemented with books, blog articles, etc.

1. notepad++ is great. I see a lot of developers use Sublime Text (which isn't free), but I use Atom. It's great for web development and provides a lot of plugins for javascript, php, ruby, etc.

2. Can't help you on this one. Sorry.

3. For web development, HTML, CSS, and JavaScript are a must. The most sought after server-side languages are PHP, Java, and C#. Debugging, testing, databases, version control systems (i.e. Git) are also necessary skills to have.

4. This really depends on what you wanna do. You can never go wrong with PHP, but if you want a job doing Java, then you should focus on Java. Ruby on Rails is still pretty popular, and it's great for beginners. If you like Python, there's also the Django framework. Networking and operating system concepts are important, but you don't need to be an expert.

The most important thing is to build a portfolio of work (personal and professional) that you've done. Maybe build a portfolio site and start a blog. Also have a look at this post: http://www.quora.com/What-skills-do-self-taught-programmers-commonly-lack.

Hope I helped and good luck! :)
+1 Amir ur Rehman · May 14, 2015
Hey Kenneth! welcome to IT world.


i am a Drupal Developer and i will recommend you web programming, 
+1 mike richardson · May 14, 2015
Hello Kenneth,
I am a Developer for a fortune 200 company I do take part in the interview and hiring process so here is my advice to you.
Hit Dice and look at the top languages that are needed right now. Pick one and focus on it!!! Write as much as you can as often as you can. Then add SQL to it and now start writing data driven applications. 
The most important question i ask any one in an interview is what have you written out side of school.

I personally would recommend C#, ASP.NET(Web Forms or MVC) and MS SQL Server. Make sure you understand database normalization and relations, Make sure you know and understand OOP!!!

Hope this helps!!!
0 mike richardson · May 14, 2015
Sorry missed the what software to use
If you go down the .Net road then Visual Studio Community edition and MS SQL Server Express
0 Kenneth Malicay · May 15, 2015
Thanks for the response and for being so helpful.

I would like to add:

  • My current interest is on java, html, css and javascript.

  • The career path that I want would probably be game programming, web programming, or android development. Server admin would be great too but I basically have no experience of handling a server.



What I would like to do now is get an entry level IT job for experience and get basic certifications to cover my lack on educational background.

My additional questions:

  1. What entry level IT job could I get base on my qualifications? Desktop support maybe? Some troubleshooting stuff? and so on... My resume includes: 1 year in BS IT. Win xp, vista, 7 & 8. MS word, excel & powerpoint. Adobe photoshop & flash. C++, java, jscript, html & css. I also have hardware knowledge and some modem/router knowledge which isn't included in my resume.

  2. Which basic certifications can and should I get? Do I need to study in a class for them or can I review it myself and just take the exam? So far what I've researched I should get:  Cisco: CCNA, MCSA & MCSE, Comptia A+ & Security+, ITIL Foundations.



Every response is greatly appreciated. Thanks. :)
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