I remember - way back - when I obtained my MCSE. Studied very hard thinking that title would open opportunites for me. I knew I did not want to continue lugging PC's around and being abused all day visiting cubicals.
My new title was not accepted well by my peers at the time. I was a "Paper MSCE" - no practical experience to back the knowledge I gained.
My big breakout from helpdesk came from a job offer as an Exchange administrator - Global administrator resposible for all Exchange servers, and MS Mail in sites around the world.
On top of that, I had to take care of the networking while the boss was on vacation.
I was in way over my head. The stress was terrible. Made some horrible mistakes. I still think the studying that I did was worth while, but there is no substitution for experience when things break - and the fact that things break keep many of us employed.
My experience thus far has been that IT is a continual cycle of studying. Study hard and get the certification, but don't expect it to instantly open doors for you unless you have some practical experience.
So, there is my first post ever.
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