According to CIO.com, among the top 10 most in-demand tech roles of 2021 are security professionals, systems analysts, and DevOps engineers. Due to ample opportunities in the field, it’s no surprise that many people are attracted to the tech industry.
Divergence Academy offers immersive programs in Cybersecurity Penetration Tester, Data Science Immersive, Cloud Engineering Immersive, and DevOps Engineer, enabling students to receive the training they need to take on such in-demand roles. It’s also the first data science-focused school in the Dallas Fort-Worth area of Texas.
Many Divergence Academy graduates have built long-term careers in their chosen tech fields. Among them are Joseph Dwyer-Kiley and Michael Harris.
Divergence Academy has designed its programs to prepare students for successful tech careers, suitable for those with or without prior industry experience.Start learning with Divergence Academy.
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Joseph Dwyer-Kiley: From Commercial Fisherman to Cybersecurity
Joseph Dwyer-Kiley was always interested in technology and computers, even building computers on his own and tinkering with computer settings and configurations. However, this inclination towards technology didn’t translate into a career until after Divergence Academy. Before going into the bootcamp, he worked as a welder and commercial fisherman.
Knowing that he wanted a more stable career, he used an online career assessment test to help him determine his next move. “I saw what [it] suggested based on my interests and my skills. I looked into some of them and found ethical hacking [among the] top on the list…Cybersecurity is a growing field right now. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics says it’s supposed to grow 20 percent between 2020 and 2025. That sounds promising,” Joseph said.
As a veteran, he had access to VA education benefits. So, he used the VET TEC program to attend Divergence Academy without having to pay any tuition. From there, he took on the bootcamp’s Cybersecurity Penetration Tester course.
In sharing what he liked about the school, Joseph said Divergence is a little more interactive with the students than a traditional bootcamp. “I love the instructors, they’re all really great. I was very talkative during the class, and they’re always up for a conversation about topic-related things, which was nice. It kept my interest engaged,” he said.
He also credited the effectiveness of the course, noting that he earned three certifications during and after completing his course. No surprise there since the curriculum is based on CompTIA certifications, which are recognized by the DOD and most of the industry.
On that note, he advised students not to wait until after graduation to take certification exams. While still enrolled in the course, Joseph earned two certifications and a third one a few weeks after graduation. “Those definitely helped me get a job, especially with the most recent job on my resume [then] being fishing,” he said.
Additionally, students should start reaching out to the Career Services Department earlier in their course. “I reached out to them on Week 1 to help with my resume format and LinkedIn account. I had everything ready to go within two or three weeks of starting the program. I started applying for jobs right then and there,” Joseph shared.
All his effort and commitment paid off. From being a fisherman, Joseph now works as an information security systems officer.
Michael Harris: Starting a Tech Career Without a Four-Year Degree
Michael Harris started off as an electrical engineering student in college but did not finish his degree, as he left to work in telecommunications and electronics for the Department of Defense, specifically with radios and satellites. Although Michael enjoyed his tech job, he didn’t enjoy the work environment. “I just wanted to grow professionally and learn more about different types of technologies,” he said.
He began building his tech career after stumbling upon Divergence Academy following his move from Louisiana. He took up a course in Cybersecurity Penetration Tester, expending his benefits offered through the VA.
One of the main things he liked about the course was networking with other students and the staff. This included meeting people from different parts of the world, given their varied backgrounds and experiences. The school puts effort into building a personal and hands-on relationship with their students, which Michael experienced firsthand.
He shared that staff members were easy to talk to and very flexible, even staying after hours to help students. “Sravan, the founder, would come into the room and talk to us. Some nights, I stayed there until eight or nine o’clock and he would come in, sit down and talk to me, and teach me things as well. It was pretty cool,” he said.
After he graduated, Michael worked as a teacher in Divergence Academy, gaining valuable real-world experience before moving into the workforce. Over time, he transitioned to working as a consultant in web application security in the private sector.
Sharing how the school helped him prepare for his current role, he said it all goes back to taking the initiative, something he developed at Divergence Academy. “I’m more engaged and am finding out how to learn on my own [and] not rely on others.”
It’s because of this that he urged prospective students keen on security studies, especially penetration testing, to learn how to rebuild a self-initiative culture and have an open mind to learn from various sources. “Don’t be afraid to talk to the instructors. They’re down to earth and really friendly,” he related.
Be the Next Success Story
Divergence Academy may be right for you if you are looking to shift careers and get into tech. Given the range of courses it offers, including cybersecurity and data science, it does not matter what your background is. Whether you’re a veteran, a fisherman, or a civilian looking to make a career shift, Divergence Academy can help you build a career in tech.
So, go ahead and equip yourself with the tech skills and career assistance you need to land a new job. Start by browsing Divergence Academy’s course catalog.
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