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Starting new career

 
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I hope this topic hasn't been beaten to death already; I didn't see too much in past posts.

I already have a BS in Mechanical engineering and an MBA. I really don't want to go back to school but would like to start a new career in programming/IT. I can program pretty well in VBA; I've created quite a few custom spreadsheet applications. I have work experience but not any programming jobs.

Is it possible to get a first IT job with only a certification? Which certification? Is more than one cert the best path to start? I don't care if a first job/projectis entry-level, part-time or whatever. I'm only looking for some spending money not to get rich immediately.

My reasons for thinking about an IT career is because I believe it would be possible to work on projects rather than getting a job with one company. I don't want to be tied down to any one location or employer indefinitely. Is this a reasonable assumption?

Thanks in advance for any advice.
 
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Two important questions:

Where do you live?

Where are you able and willing to go for work?

I hope you realize that most organizations are not eager to hire trainees who plan to move on once they have experience.
[ December 28, 2004: Message edited by: Mike Gershman ]
 
Antonios Hadjigeorgalis
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I currently live in Baltimore, Md but would like to live elsewhere. I am willing to move to anywhere in the world temporarily. I have dual US/EU citizenship so those countries would be the easiest from a legal perspective.

Also, I'm only interested in contract work. I have no desire to be a longterm employee. Of course, I could fail to mention this fact for a first opportunity. If finding contract work as a first employment opportunity is an unreasonable expectation then I may have to change my game plan.
 
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Originally posted by Antonios Hadjigeorgalis:

My reasons for thinking about an IT career is because I believe it would be possible to work on projects rather than getting a job with one company. I don't want to be tied down to any one location or employer indefinitely. Is this a reasonable assumption?



So basically you want to be an independent consultant. Are you sure such jobs don't exist for mechanical engineers? Certainly with an engineering degree and MBA seems like you could find some type of consulting.

How about working for a consulting company? It could be large firm like a McKinsey or maybe a small firm. For example a friend of mine works for a 20 person company which often does contract work for the aerospace industry. in either case, there are plenty of firms, allowing you to move around.

I would highly recommend checking out "What Color is Your Parachute" or a similar book to really consider what you want to do, and then see if you can find it with your existing skill set, rather than attempting an industry change.

--Mark
 
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noone in his right mind hires an independent consultant with no field experience.
I know it happened during the height of the boom but not anymore.
 
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Some of my friends who were Mechnical Engineers but who wanted to switch to Software area applied to those companies who use both Mechanical engg and software.Even as a fresher you have an edge there over experienced programmer(They can not put just any programmer there without Mech domain knowledge).Some of the companies are:AutoDesk,Parametric Technology Corporation(www.ptc.com),Fluent Inc(www.fluent.com).I know for sure,Fluent used to hire freshers based on knowledge of CFD(you must be knowing it) and C++.
[ December 29, 2004: Message edited by: Arjun Shastry ]
 
Antonios Hadjigeorgalis
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Thanks for the great comments but I think maybe I didn't phrase my question clearly. I never worked as an engineer. Most of my experience is in building, running, and finally selling, my families supermarket business. I also worked on the trading floor of the AMEX, trading & IT support.

I'm currently working on my longterm business goals but it could be sometime before I see positive cash flow. I could still work on my ideas and hold down a full time job so I'm looking for a way to make decent money so I can stop depleting my savings. I thought of programming because I have enjoyed the little bit of programming I've done in the past.

So what it sounds like I'm hearing is that having a certification would not be enough to find a short-term, temp, or parttime job. Is that the general consensus?

thanks again
 
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