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CompTIA A+ Certification Puts Student One Step Closer to His Dream Job
Brett Ruth, A+ Certified

My CompTIA A+ certification has laid the foundation for a 
rewarding future Its a great launching pad to additional 
certifications and a lucrative career.

Brett Ruth, a high school senior in Springfield, Missouri, has wanted to work in the computer industry since he could click a mouse. "For as long as I can remember, I've been fascinated with computers, how they're put together and what makes them work," says Brett. "Turning that curiosity into a career was a natural choice for me. I just needed to know how to begin my formal training." For Brett, who is aiming for a career in network administration, the first step in realizing that goal was receiving CompTIA's A+ certification.

Brett's computer science teacher, Sharon Maslowsky, recommended Brett apply for one of five certification training scholarships being offered by the Springfield public school system and New Horizons Computer Learning Center. Recognizing academic excellence and the wish to pursue a career in computer science, winners would receive a free weeklong CompTIA A+ preparation course. Brett filled out the application and crossed his fingers.

Already one of Glendale High School's most successful students on and off the computer, Brett was awarded the scholarship and training. "I was so excited when I won," he says happily. "A+ is the right first step in my career because it teaches the basics of computer service and repair-skills that every network administrator needs to know." After passing the examination on the first try, Brett was on the road to success.

As one of the youngest A+ certified professionals, Brett didn't have to wait long to start reaping the rewards of certification. In fact, a new part-time job was on the horizon, thanks in part to his trainer, Tom Dapp, at New Horizons. Aware of an opening for a technician at Computer Renaissance (a retail computer store), Tom recommended Brett for the position due in part to his A+ certification. "If Brett had the skills to pass the A+ test, I knew that he could handle the repair duties required at the store, so I recommended him to the owner," says Tom.

After a thorough interview, Brett was hired and quickly went to work building and repairing systems for the store. "Thanks to the A+ course, I got a great job that will give me the 'real-world' experience that is so valuable for technicians today," Brett says.

As part of the six-person Computer Renaissance team, Brett's A+ status lends credibility to the store. According to Steve Yates, president/owner, "Certified professionals give us credibility in the eyes of our customers. They know that with certified technicians on staff that we can provide the best service possible."

Steve prefers to hire certified individuals, and currently has two on staff. "Certification assures me that the technician has the knowledge to do the job right, and to recognized industry standards," he says. Steve is also quick to market his certified technicians to the public, touting their expertise via newspaper radio, TV and billboard advertisements.

Brett especially likes CompTIA certifications because as he explains, "Everyone is familiar with CompTIA certifications. They are respected in the industry and carry a lot of weight when applying for a job. The A+ program in particular serves as an indicator of base-level technical knowledge."

Already well on his way to a promising future, Brett plans to continue his certification training and schooling. "Today you can never have enough knowledge, especially in the technology industry where things are constantly changing, and you need to keep current to stay competitive," Brett explains. "I'll continue to use certification and education as a means to sharpen my skills." After graduation, Brett will be taking courses at the Ozarks Technical Community College, and then it's on to a four-year institution for a computer science degree. "My A+ certification has laid the foundation for a rewarding future. It's a great launching pad to additional certifications and a lucrative career," he says with a smile.

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