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Thread: Career Change

  1. Junior Member Registered Member
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    Default Career Change

    I am currently working as a biologist. I wanted to go to dental school but that didn't work out. I don't really like working as a biologist since I never really planned on working in a lab. IT interests me, I would like to get into networking. I was wondering if I can have a decent career in IT with a degree in Biology? I know that about 10 years ago any major would do in IT, but I am wondering if in todays day it would be enough? I don't want to rush into something to get certified, and waste time and money.
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    #2
    Honestly, all you need are Certs.

    Scratch that:
    What you really need is.... PASSION.

    Don't even bother if you don't have that.

    You appear to be someone with IT as #3 on their list....
    (just saying)
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    Quote Originally Posted by volfkhat View Post
    Honestly, all you need are Certs.

    Scratch that:
    What you really need is.... PASSION.

    Don't even bother if you don't have that.

    You appear to be someone with IT as #3 on their list....
    (just saying)
    I know it seems that way but honestly I would rather move on and try something else. The lab is not for me and I would love to try working in IT. I am not saying I know 100% that IT is for me but I would love to get a chance to work in IT and take it from there. I have always been interested in computers and have been tinkering with computers ever since I was young. I just don't want to get into something where there is no room to move up or where there is no way in.
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  5. Senior Member yoba222's Avatar
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    #4
    IT or computer science degree is preferred but a decent STEM degree is perfectly respectable in IT these days if you have a few certs. Getting the first job will be the hardest nut to crack but doable.
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  6. This site changed my life mzx380's Avatar
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    #5
    Quote Originally Posted by yoba222 View Post
    IT or computer science degree is preferred but a decent STEM degree is perfectly respectable in IT these days if you have a few certs. Getting the first job will be the hardest nut to crack but doable.
    agreed
    The first job will be the toughest and it is a good chance it will pay lower than what you are currently making. The goal should be to find a job that will allow you to get your foot in the door or provide you a means of being able to leverage your background in Biology as well.

    Either way
    Prepare to execute a solid study program
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  7. They are watching you NetworkNewb's Avatar
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    Lol, you seem all over the place. But I'll say this. You live once. If you want to try and do something go and try it. You don't get another life to try it again.
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    #7
    I have to agree, passion is #1. That said, anyone can say they have passion, you have to show it. Where's your home lab? What have you done to practice for VMware / Microsoft / Cisco certs? What sites / blogs do you read to stay up on current trends and what are the trends that interest you? How are you showing this is more than a job, it's a career?
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  9. Not IT n00b dave330i's Avatar
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    IT is not that hard. Just need to be little smart and have enough desire to earn a good living.
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    #9
    Im sorry but as someone who has been into I.T since around 12 years old... One doesnt simply wake up one day and say "I want to work in I.T".
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    #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Sylice View Post
    Im sorry but as someone who has been into I.T since around 12 years old... One doesnt simply wake up one day and say "I want to work in I.T".
    Who said I woke up one day and decided to get into IT. I have been thinking about transitioning into IT for several months. Everyone has to start somewhere.... I'm glad you've been in IT for 12 years....
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    Quote Originally Posted by EANx View Post
    I have to agree, passion is #1. That said, anyone can say they have passion, you have to show it. Where's your home lab? What have you done to practice for VMware / Microsoft / Cisco certs? What sites / blogs do you read to stay up on current trends and what are the trends that interest you? How are you showing this is more than a job, it's a career?
    I am only considering IT for now, everyone needs to start somewhere, I am just wondering if its possible to survive in this field with a Biology BA. Obviously I don't have a home lab yet, nor have I begun to practice for VMware/Microsoft/cisco, I am just studying for the A+ for now...
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    #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Interested View Post
    I know it seems that way but honestly I would rather move on and try something else. The lab is not for me and I would love to try working in IT. I am not saying I know 100% that IT is for me but I would love to get a chance to work in IT and take it from there. I have always been interested in computers and have been tinkering with computers ever since I was young. I just don't want to get into something where there is no room to move up or where there is no way in.
    Everyone that was 10 years old or 15 years old or 20 years old has always been "imterested in computers since they were young" around year 2000. The past 2 generations have grown up with computers, that's not being imterested.

    Go on youtube and see if you can understand some stuff, search and see different areas of IT. The field is so huge, broad generalizations do not apply anymore.

    What has gotten your interest? Do you know what you like to do?
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    #13
    I understand your situation very well. I grew up in agriculture, owned my own dairy farm and it was/is something I love. Well life decided to throw some curveballs throughout the years and I needed to find a different occupation to support my family. Was IT my first choice? nope.

    I seriously considered being an electrician or a welder. For one reason or another though I found long term issues with those career fields. So I looked into networking. While some here may laugh I was an avid gamer on a terrible internet connection. I decided I needed to learn how to tell the tier 1-2 techs what was wrong, eventually I started communicating with two gentleman who were the midwest backbone managers. We traded emails throughout the years and when the career change question came up I asked them. They gave me a really good view of what IT networking involved (both are JNCIEs).

    So after looking around and doing some research I decided to go into IT. I like to design and build so networking is a good fit. I don't have a degree in anything just an A+. You will find it a challenge for sure, and sometimes you will wonder why you made this choice. You'll deal with peoples problems every day (welcome to helpdesk) but eventually those things that you knew nothing about in IT you've now learned.

    I've seen people with BS and Masters know absolutely nothing coming out of school into IT and make some of the most ridiculous mistakes. Certs are good and I'm a huge fan of them but real world experience is where the best learning is done. You'll find things that shouldn't cause an error are, and things that should aren't. IT is problem solving and if you enjoy that it's a good career field.

    Sorry if this is long winded and a little scattered I'm also fielding helpdesk calls while typing this. Be open to everything, right now I do more with servers than networks. That'll change but it's unlikely you'll be a "network guy" until you get a lot more experience. Try and find a mentor or someone to ask questions, whether on TE or somewhere else. Most of all good luck with whatever you choose to do!
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    #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Interested View Post
    I am currently working as a biologist. I wanted to go to dental school but that didn't work out. I don't really like working as a biologist since I never really planned on working in a lab. IT interests me, I would like to get into networking. I was wondering if I can have a decent career in IT with a degree in Biology? I know that about 10 years ago any major would do in IT, but I am wondering if in todays day it would be enough? I don't want to rush into something to get certified, and waste time and money.
    Hi OP,
    Can i ask why you want to be in I.T.? Like what about it lures you into it? And yeah passion is cool and all but money can make someone passionate about anything lol

    IMO look into security. Dont have networking be your end result. There is much less jobs, and its an established section of I.T. meaning the old dudes in those positions are likely staying. Security on the other hand is flourishing and isn't as established as networking. I would really put some time and thought into that. Even software development would be way better and have much more job potential. This is coming from someone in the networking field, with Cisco certs. Of course for security you will need to understand networking, so dont think i am discouraging you from studying that, because you 100% will need to. Just saying, dont make it the end goal plan.
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  16. Senior Member Moon Child's Avatar
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    #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Interested View Post
    I am currently working as a biologist. I wanted to go to dental school but that didn't work out. I don't really like working as a biologist since I never really planned on working in a lab. IT interests me, I would like to get into networking. I was wondering if I can have a decent career in IT with a degree in Biology? I know that about 10 years ago any major would do in IT, but I am wondering if in todays day it would be enough? I don't want to rush into something to get certified, and waste time and money.
    I am in 2nd computer job have a degree and certs... from what I have observed a lot of computer jobs are very competitive to get and don't pay as much as people think... at least starting out. You actually start out very low and most the time on short 1 month or 2 month contracts, a lot work starts out part time low pay. It takes years of experience in the field before the salary goes up and at least feedback I have gotten from the employers is the degree and certs holds very little value what they want is years of experience in the field. You got have the right experience in the areas employers are looking for, not just any IT experience.

    I think you should stay as a biologist unless your looking for a paycut, no job security, and little to no benefits. Networking and Programming pays good, but those are jobs to be honest many people fail at. They pay good for a reason... many people can't do the job and it is an extremely competitive job market.

    From what I have observed too a lot people in tech support and working as computer technicians are doing it for the "fun" factor and not for the money. They are typically young kids so the low pay, short contracts, part-time work, and little to no benefits isn't an issue for them because young 20 year old adults are on parents insurance and don't need money like someone older needs.. no wife or kids to take care of. Don't have house payment to worry about, medical problems and medical bills, not worrying about paying off many bills. Maybe the generalization is wrong, but in 2nd computer job now and this is what I have observed.
    Last edited by Moon Child; 11-11-2017 at 03:13 PM.
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    #16
    Just curious on your age? There is more to it than just needing years of experience in the field. Sometimes its just life experience and precious work experience even if it is in a different field.

    I moved into IT from management last year, and within 18 months I'm on more than I was after 10 years in management and have progressed into higher level roles and tasks than people who have been in my team for 5 years or more.

    Its all about attitude and experience, but not necessarily IT experience. Get a job, get stuck in, don't be afraid of learning or taking on a task that's new.



    Quote Originally Posted by Moon Child View Post
    I am in 2nd computer job have a degree and certs... from what I have observed a lot of computer jobs are very competitive to get and don't pay as much as people think... at least starting out. You actually start out very low and most the time on short 1 month or 2 month contracts, a lot work starts out part time low pay. It takes years of experience in the field before the salary goes up and at least feedback I have gotten from the employers is the degree and certs holds very little value what they want is years of experience in the field. You got have the right experience in the areas employers are looking for, not just any IT experience.

    I think you should stay as a biologist unless your looking for a paycut, no job security, and little to no benefits. Networking and Programming pays good, but those are jobs to be honest many people fail at. They pay good for a reason... many people can't do the job and it is an extremely competitive job market.

    From what I have observed too a lot people in tech support and working as computer technicians are doing it for the "fun" factor and not for the money. They are typically young kids so the low pay, short contracts, part-time work, and little to no benefits isn't an issue for them because young 20 year old adults are on parents insurance and don't need money like someone older needs.. no wife or kids to take care of. Don't have house payment to worry about, medical problems and medical bills, not worrying about paying off many bills. Maybe the generalization is wrong, but in 2nd computer job now and this is what I have observed.
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    #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Moon Child View Post
    I think you should stay as a biologist unless your looking for a paycut, no job security, and little to no benefits.
    ha!
    ^This guy nailed it.
    There are definitely some great gigs out there.... but the IT market isn't all Rainbows & Unicorns.
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    #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Interested View Post
    I am currently working as a biologist. I wanted to go to dental school but that didn't work out. I don't really like working as a biologist since I never really planned on working in a lab. IT interests me, I would like to get into networking. I was wondering if I can have a decent career in IT with a degree in Biology? I know that about 10 years ago any major would do in IT, but I am wondering if in todays day it would be enough? I don't want to rush into something to get certified, and waste time and money.
    Biology degree is fine. Try to find a volunteer opportunity and a mentor before leaving the lab.
    "If I were to say, 'God, why me?' about the bad things, then I should have said, 'God, why me?' about the good things that happened in my life."

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  20. Senior Member Moon Child's Avatar
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    #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Welly_59 View Post
    Just curious on your age? There is more to it than just needing years of experience in the field. Sometimes its just life experience and precious work experience even if it is in a different field.

    I moved into IT from management last year, and within 18 months I'm on more than I was after 10 years in management and have progressed into higher level roles and tasks than people who have been in my team for 5 years or more.

    Its all about attitude and experience, but not necessarily IT experience. Get a job, get stuck in, don't be afraid of learning or taking on a task that's new.

    I just turned 39 in November. The computer job I have now is decent pay if you factor in the overtime, benefits, 401k and that it is a permanent position. I lucked out with this job compared to others, but I think this is a combination of a warehouse and IT job. You need both IT skills and warehouse skills for the job. Warehouse jobs tend to be decent jobs, I tried before get in a few warehouse jobs but didn't get those jobs. One warehouse job I didn't get hired for had a nice union, lots of overtime, excellent benefits, pension, 401k. Guys in the union at that warehouse were making 40-50k a year with excellent benefits and pensions. Of course hundreds of people were applying to work there lol

    While working at my warehouse/ IT computer technician job I have had several employers call me up with job offers that I turned down because they offered me less than what I am making now. They offered me equal to less pay, part-time work, short contracts, little to no benefits, no 401k, no overtime, little job security. So I turned down about 5 job offers and stayed at my current job. I told them why do I want to leave this job if your offering me less money, a short contract that isn't a pernament position, no 401k, and no benefits. Told them thanks for job offer but keeping warehouse/ IT job.
    Last edited by Moon Child; 11-11-2017 at 08:20 PM.
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    #20
    What's a warehouse IT job? Never heard of this before.
    What do you do on a daily basis, what tools do you use?
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    Probably something along the lines of basic data centre tech. Keeping inventory, carting servers about, taking deliveries of storage etc. At least that what's I'm thinking of

    Quote Originally Posted by TheFORCE View Post
    What's a warehouse IT job? Never heard of this before.
    What do you do on a daily basis, what tools do you use?
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  23. Senior Member Moon Child's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Welly_59 View Post
    Probably something along the lines of basic data centre tech. Keeping inventory, carting servers about, taking deliveries of storage etc. At least that what's I'm thinking of
    Yes its that plus fixing up Laptops, Desktops, Multifunctional Devices, Tablets, Phones, TV's, Game Consoles, etc. Finding parts for them, fixing them. Diagnosing what is wrong the device, and trying to fix it. Taking out Screens, Hdd's, keyboards, system fans, and replacing them. Doing a lot of inventory, using a pallet jack and moving pallets around in the warehouse, building pallets, weighing them. We have a lot different departments in the Tech Center I just do laptops.

    Been on this job close to a year now, but took a little break to go to truck driving school and got a CDL-A and drove for a company for a little while for kicks and returned back to work at my computer job.

    Previous job had in IT was 10 years earlier doing PHP, Javascript, DHTML, SQL that involved creating websites that were database driven. Pay rate was actually less on that job and less hours than what I get at this job. In between that time frame got a Masters in Education besides my bachelors in Computer Info Systems and a teaching license. Worked many years in Education field as a sub and paraprofessional, but never landed that teaching job. Did security work for a while too. Between the Masters in Education and teaching license, IT experience and CIS degree w/ certs, and CDL-A at least know will always have some job, but unfortunately most job offers I get is truck driving. I get emails and phone calls every week for companies looking for OTR drivers.
    Last edited by Moon Child; 11-12-2017 at 01:01 AM.
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