Vision + Plan = Certification

3 min read

IBM Cloud certification is for anyone, working anywhere. Just ask Amr Elmestekawi, a freelance computer engineer in Cairo, Egypt.

“Cloud technology will be important for every designer or engineer who works in a technical field,” he says, “because cloud computing means everything is connected to the internet. And once you are connected into the internet, you have a lot of options via the cloud.”

Amr tells a story of training and studying that will be familiar to a lot of people about his path to becoming skilled in cloud technologies.

Taking the first step to certification

Amr had earned his master's degree in computer engineering and completed training courses in cloud technologies, including winning a scholarship for graduate students to learn about cloud. But he had not earned any cloud certifications until a posting for a job in cloud caught his eye.

“I started my journey in cloud computing the day I found a project asking for certification,” he recalls.

That journey was eye-opening because while Amr had been introduced to cloud computing in his master's program, it was only a very basic introduction.

“Before starting the journey toward certification,” he explains, “I was thinking about cloud technologies as a big data center. But after reading about cloud technologies from different resources and on the IBM website, I began to be familiar with technologies related to cloud computing. I found the field more and more interesting.”

Looking ahead at opportunities

Amr also learned about opportunities in the cloud. “If I could become a certified cloud technician or cloud engineer,” he says, “it would be a good thing so that I could work in a multinational organization and elevate my career.”

He planned to begin his certification journey as an IBM Cloud Technical Advocate. Amr explains, “It's the first certification on the track of cloud technologies and cloud computing. It's introductory and contains different technologies and useful knowledge for the beginning of your career in cloud.”

But first, there was training and the certification exam.

Studying and preparing for the exam

Amr studied hard. He read and prepared on his own. He participated in educational programs about cloud, though none was leading to certification. Then, he discovered IBM’s Cloud program. “It was my first time working with the IBM Center for Cloud Training,” he notes, “and I found it very helpful. I could get the required knowledge for the certification I needed.”  

Preparation was a lot of work. But Amr had a plan: “The first day, I began to read about different technologies for cloud computing. The second day, I began to do in-depth reading about what IBM platforms can contain for cloud computing. After that, I began to watch more practical videos about this kind of certification, about this kind of technology, about deployment and about implementing new services. I began to review different questions from other people who completed this certification before so that I could be familiar with the type of questions and not to be surprised during the exam. “

And Amr had a vision. “Whenever I start something new, I think it's like cotton candy — whenever you start, you think that it's huge, but once you bite it, you find it shrinks. It's the same thing that happened to me the first time I dealt with IBM Cloud technology.”

Achieving success

On exam day, Amr was both nervous and curious about what would be on the test. “So, I began to calm down,” he recalls, “I told myself that the test is just one step to become certified. It was a situation like cotton candy again. I had to bite it to make it shrink. The most challenging part of the exam was when there were questions that I didn't expect to see. The most enjoyable part was the moment when I found that I had passed the exam. I was so happy. It was a big victory. I knew that all the time and effort that I spent on studying and searching for information on cloud technology allowed me to take the next step in my career.”

Moving ahead with cloud technology

Today, Amr is still learning and doing. “I spend approximately 50% of my day gaining new knowledge because technology is booming rapidly and at a fast pace, all over the world. And having this cloud training and knowing these emerging technologies enables me to be up to date.”

He has new confidence to keep going and says, “I’ve done it. Now, it’s your turn.”

Learn more about the IBM Center for Cloud Training.

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