So you're considering an IT career, and leaning toward training as a computer network technician or administrator.
Demand for networking specialists is fairly consistent across Canada, and starting salaries in this field are quite competitive. A healthy job market makes investing in this training path a smart move—provided you choose the right program.
With so many IT training options out there, both off and online, it can be extremely challenging for students to know which institutions to trust. Where should you put your tuition dollars, your time, and your energy?
Start by considering the hallmarks of effective career training. Evaluate the computer networking programs you're considering against these 6 key criteria—and you'll find the ideal program for you.
1. does the program provide comprehensive networking training?
You’ll need a specific set of skills to land your first job in the computer networking field. So you should examine the course descriptions carefully to be sure everything you need is covered.
A good program will include training in:
☑️ Installing and configuring network hardware and software
☑️ Network security
☑️ Wireless technologies
☑️ Network administration
☑️ Troubleshooting techniques
☑️ Disaster recovery procedures
Note: If you’re hoping to get into the job market as quickly as possible, look for an accelerated program that covers all of the above topics in a relatively short time. It’s possible to complete a quality program in a year or so.
2. Does Coursework Include Prep for Relevant Networking Certifications?
In addition to earning a diploma or degree, networking professionals challenge exams to earn industry-recognized certifications.
These certifications are accepted across the globe as proof of skill, and are often required to apply for networking jobs.
A quality networking program will outline which certifications students will be prepared to earn following completion of training, such as those offered by CompTIA (A+, Net+, and Linux+) and Cisco (Cisco Certified Network Associate or CCNA).
So take a close look at the course descriptions to learn which certifications are covered.
3. Does the Computer Networking Program Include an Internship?
If you're just starting out in networking, and don't have any work experience, you'll definitely want to choose a training program that includes an internship.
An internship offers students a way to immediately apply concepts taught in training. That helps them entrench important skills through practice and build confidence in their new abilities.
Plus, a few weeks of job experience gives newcomers to the field a chance to make connections with potential future employers (you may get hired during your internship).
And even if you don't get a job offer from that particular employer, you will finish training with a stronger resume, and be better prepared for interviews.
4. Does the school have a good reputation?
Pay close attention to the overall reputation of the college or training institution.
How long has the school been in operation? Do you see good reviews online from past students? What impression do you get from the website and social channels?
You need to go beyond the school's marketing message and get information from real students and grads.
5. DOES THE COLLEGE PROVIDE A FULL RANGE OF CAREER SERVICES?
How much support will you get when it comes to landing your first computer networking job? A good school helps students make the transition from training to employment.
See if the college provides assistance with:
☑️ Creating a resume and cover letter
☑️ Finding and applying to networking jobs
☑️ Preparing for job interviews
☑️ Connecting with area businesses that commonly hire the school’s networking grads
6. DOES THE COLLEGE PROVIDE DATA ON GRADUATE EMPLOYMENT?
When you're comparing networking schools and programs, it's important to prioritize colleges that are transparent about employment rates.
After all, the reason you're looking for IT training is to get a great job. You deserve to know how successful the college has been in helping students achieve this goal.
On the program section of each school's website, look for a list of companies who have hired graduates of the computer networking program.
Also, see if the school advertises the average employment rate of its graduates. How many grads found jobs in a related field last year? You'll want a college with at least an 80% employment rate.
FIND A QUALITY COMPUTER NETWORKING PROGRAM
Have a look at the accelerated Computer Networking Technology program from Herzing College. It’s available at our Ottawa, Toronto, and Winnipeg campuses.
The program provides thorough, hands-on training in network installation, configuration, administration, and maintenance.
Plus, through the Herzing Open Education Program (HOEP), our networking grads can upgrade their skills by taking courses from any of our other technology programs—for free.
Click below to learn more about our computer networking training and chat live with an Admissions Advisor. We’re here to help!