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Like any certification in any field, preparation is the key to success. MATC provides a pretty solid opportunity to gain a basic understanding of the Network aspect of IT. There are several steps that need to be taken beforehand to guarantee a passing grade. With that being said, certifications should be considered a necessity for any IT student, and should not be taken lightly. Certifications will set you apart from the saturated workforce of entry level positions. Having a few certifications under your belt shows ambition and passion to possible employers, they are truly invaluable. So let’s delve into the first step required to solidifying success.

Introduction to the Network+ Certification

The first step towards taking the actual certification itself is to gain a firm understanding as to what is covered. Going into the exam blind is definitely counter-productive. A simple google search shows exactly what you should expect.

1. Physical installation of a network

  • Cable management
  • Activation and licensing
  • Deployment methods
  • Software distribution

2. Network maintenance

  • Consistent software updates
  • Replacing defective hardware
  • Data back-up
  • Daily monitoring and diagnostics

3. Consistent troubleshooting and preventative measures

  • Command Prompt is your best friend
  • Verifying network connectivity
  • Enforcing company-wide technology policies

4. TCP/IP and the OSI Model

  • Must be familiar with technical jargon and terminology
  • OSI Model is crucial

5. Basic understand of all network components

  • Firm understanding of how networks are set up
  • Hubs, switches, bridges, routers, gateways etc.

Why is it so important to pass this certification?

As previously mentioned, obtaining certifications within your field of study sets you apart from the crowd. Employers will immediately gain a better first impression when seeing these on your resume. I know several people who have been in the IT Field their entire lives, and they are continuously renewing certain certifications. They always express that not only does it look good on paper, but the skills that are learned are even more valuable. Renewing certs every three or so years only strengthens your knowledge and area of expertise.

Are there practice tests to prepare with?

After a few weeks of studying and preparing, there is an option to partake in a practice test which simulates the actual exam. These tests are relatively easy to stumble upon when searching Google. There are many different variants of the exam, all of which cover the same basis. Revisiting these practice tests every week or so on top of studying will ensure your best possible chance of obtaining the Network+ Certification. After a few weeks of preparation, it’s time to look for a facility to actually schedule and take the exam.

Where to take the Network+ Certification in Milwaukee

MATC [700 W State St, Milwaukee, WI 53233]

  • If you are currently a student at MATC, they make it pretty simple to sign up and take any certification related to your field. The Network+ cert is offered currently, as well as dozens of others.

SofwareONE [20875 Crossroads Circle, Suite 275 Waukesha, Wisconsin 53186]

  • Global technology consulting company that offers dozens of certifications

UMOS Inc. [2701 S. Chase Ave. Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53207]

  • Non-profit advocacy organization that offers countless certifications


Final Thoughts

The opportunities that present themselves from obtaining a few certifications make it obvious how valuable they are. Salary is known to increase up to 15%, and certifications will save you money in the long run. When I first heard that they costed several hundred dollars, I became apprehensive. At this moment in my life, I really don’t have $300.00 to shell out just to take an exam. With that being said, after doing just a little research, I’ve found that it’s well worth the investment. I remember when I first started at MATC, and how often my professors would mention these to the class. I shrugged it off continuously for the past two years, and I’m already regretting it. Pushing these off is definitely something you shouldn’t do. I am on course to graduate with my Associate’s Degree in IT Support this upcoming December, and have yet to take a single certification. The thought of that is pretty intimidating. The Information Technology field is ever evolving, and it will never stop. This is one of the very few fields of expertise that require constant renewal of education. If you take a few years off of learning, you’re not obsolete to your employer. Certifications are the absolute best way to stay current and relevant. I personally plan to take the three most important certifications within the next 6 months, which will hopefully facilitate finding an entry level job. Without a doubt, I will continue furthering my education regardless of what I decide to specialize in.