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CAREER CHANGE: Is getting a 2nd, revelant college degree necessary?

By sadeth_cheng1 ·
PLEASE SKIP TO THE LAST PARAGRAPH IF YOU DON'T WANT TO READ MY ENTIRE POST. I know it's lengthy, but wanted to provided better insight to my dilemma.

I want to make this backstory quick. I always had a passion to becoming an airline pilot since a child. I enlisted in the US military right after high school and worked on the flight-line for 3 years (not pilot because I wasn't an officer), but decided to execute a lateral move (military career change) because I was stuck in a non-deployable unit. I chose to become a cyber network operator (equivalent to the civilian "network administrator )for my last 2 years of my enlistment, and grew a new-found interest in it as I was progressing fast in this new, IT field as observed by my superiors and their consistent selection towards me to participate in critical, rapidly-deployed operations overseas. I would say I was a better network guy than an aviation guy which I had always considered my passion.

Currently, I am out the military. Through much dilemma, I have recently decided to pursue my passion and is college this spring with a chosen major in Aviation Science And Management (B.S.) in conjunction with flight training, which will all be financially covered by the VA's Post 9/11 GI Bill.

However, the aviation industry, for the past decade, is not as glorious and stable as it once was. I have been heavily considering pursuing a network administrator career as a back-up.

READ BELOW FOR THE MAIN QUESTION OF THIS POST:
To finally get to the main point of this post, if I decide to go ahead with a career change to IT in the future, and I have already have a degree in something not closely related to computers/IT (which would be my future aviation degree), would it be worth it to get a second bachelor's degree in IT along with all my IT vendor certifications or do most employees/companies see a degree as just a "check-in-the box", and they actually don't really care if you have a directly-related IT degree as long s you have work experience and certifications?

Any help is greatly appreciated.
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Career Change

by Lisa_TEK In reply to CAREER CHANGE: Is getting ...

This is a great question. IT employers value experience over specific education, so you may not have to get a 2nd degree--as long as you don't let your experience get out of date (which would happen if you took time off to get an aviation degree). If you choose the IT path, I strongly recommend working with an IT recruiter or someone in the industry who can help translate your military resume into language a hiring manager will understand. We've done a lot of work around helping vets transition into IT careers at my org, and the two things we've found are that vets need some help translating resumes, and that it really helps if an organization can connect them with another vet who can explain the recruiting process, how to act in interviews (like don't necessarily wait to be asked a question to provide info), how important networking is, and whether the company culture will suit you (like, is there a strong team culture or will you feel siloed?). Good luck making your decision!

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