I just watched the Mind Wide Open video from Cisco’s updated Networking Academy site. For something which only last 50 seconds, it offers a whole lot of inspiration for Academy students and graduates.
When I began the Cisco CCNA program in 2003, all I knew is that I wanted to learn more about Networks. By the end, coupled with my work experience, I had a fundamental understanding, not only of networks themselves, but that Networking affects every business. The skills I acquired are just as applicable to the Stock Exchange in NYC, as they are to the industrial sector in China. Nowadays, all businesses need to exchange and access data through networks of some form or another (after all, the internet is the world’s largest public network). I can work for almost any organisation, in any industry.
I really hope the video inspires students to think more broadly about the skills they’ve acquired and their career options; Last year, during a phone call with Jane Lewis (the CCNA program leader for the UK) she told me that most people who’d finished the CCNA program thought their only avenue was to work for Cisco. It’s not: there’s a whole world out there 🙂