speaking from experience
I just entered IT 7 years ago and I was over 30 years old. I was going to school for my bachelors degree in Business Administration and I had already obtain my A+ and Network+ certification. I was told by so many interviewers, I need experience not schooling. (Note: I agree with xangpow (A+, Network+, and Security+) are the best certs to start with. You can also pass these studying on your own with having a lab. That's very important.) So after being told I need experience, I quit school, and I received my first IT job a month later. A ton of jobs require A+ certifications and it has boosted my career a lot even over other qualified candidates.
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