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What is a reasonable first job for me?

By tmc19126 ·
I already asked about what the better cert. test to take was, and got some good answers.

Now I want to know, with a year left in school before I get my associates in computer network systems, and interning at my current job, by shadowing the IT guys around. I need to start focusing in on what I really want to do, and what is realistic, also what type of salary I should expect.

I want to focus in on security, but starting to realize that will be the "real job" way down the line. Right now I need/want my first job as soon as I can get it. I set a timeline for myself by May/June of next year for this to happen. By then I would have been an intern for at least 6 months and will have at least 1 cert. to add on my resume.

I have never worked in IT before, that's why I am doing the intership to get some credible exp. on my all "customer service" resume. I don't really want to do helpdesk, but whatever gets my foot in the door. I don't expect any company to pay a rookie with no prior exp. over $80,000 a year...LOL

Thoughts and suggestions needed, thanks!


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The best answer I can give is "It depends"

by NickNielsen In reply to What is a reasonable firs ...

It depends on what jobs are available where you are or want to be. If the market is tight, you may have to take that help desk job at $8-10/hour just to get your foot in the door.

It depends on where you would like to start (PC support, networking support, etc.). Entry level PC support jobs are fairly common around here and usually start at about $10-11/hour. Networking jobs aren't as common and most employers here require some experience, but the pay for experienced PC/networking techs starts at about $18-20/hour.

It depends on the certifications you have. A CompTIA cert (A+, Network+) is a good starter, but the boot camps and cram sites have devalued it over time. The Network+, on the other hand, has retained some of the respect and will help you get in the networking door; match it with a CCNA and an internship in networking and you most likely have the trifecta that gets you into the networking job.

It depends on where you are doing your internship and what kind of work you are doing there. If you are doing primarily PC support, that may be where you want to start. If you are also performing network support/admin functions (network configuration and troubleshooting, user management, AD, etc.), you will probably have a better shot at the networking support job.

It's good that you understand that the big bucks are not there in the entry level job, but your entry-level networking job will usually pay several dollars an hour more than the entry-level PC support or help desk job.

Best of luck in your job search and your education.

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thx for the advice

by tmc19126 In reply to The best answer I can giv ...

Yeah I'm in a major city, Philly, and the job market for IT is very good, have a lot of major companies here. I don't have any certs. yet, working on that as well.

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Get your foot in the door

by JamesRL In reply to thx for the advice

Some companies may even pay for you to take courses towards certs.

I took an entry level position even after getting 5 years experience, just so I could get into one of the big technology companies, and I never regretted it.


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