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I had been looking at Koenig Solutions as a training solution for the last four years...

Paul Harrison (United Kingdom), MCITP SQL Server 2008: Database Developer and Database Administrator;MCITP: Business Intelligence Developer;MCPD Windows Developer 4 20 Jan to 03 Sep 2011

I had been looking at Koenig Solutions as a training solution for the last four years. I have heard favorable reports from my colleagues who had attended courses with Koenig in the past. Unfortunately due to work commitments I had never been able to plan the training into my busy work schedule as a contractor. Recently I have finished a contract which left me some available time to look at some training and qualification updates before I looked at finding my next position.

 I have balanced out the possibilities of doing training at home in the UK but for all the qualifications I wished to achieve it would have taken approximately 2 years of on-off study and exams which was not feasible as a contractor. But when I looked at Koenig Solutions, I found that I could achieve the same in three months solid training. This would allow me to get into the frame of mind for studying with no daily distractions like wife, kids and the pub. Looking at the prices I could also achieve this at 1/3rd of the price for the UK, taking into account that all accommodation and food was included, it seemed like a no-brainer to me, plus the fact that I would be visiting a beautiful country.

Next was the location. Coming from the UK I used to overcast rainy weather conditions with the odd spell of sunny weather is lucky. I looked at the four locations available for study and immediately Shimla sprung out at me. The temperature was good at the time of the year I had to visit and the thought of being at the foot of the Himalayas, as a serious hobbyist photographer was well imagination provoking.

 I decided to do the MCITP SQL Server 2008: Database Developer and Database Administrator course (Combo) provided by Koenig Solutions as well as the MCITP: SQL Server 2008 Business Intelligence Developer and the MCPD: Windows Developer .NET 4 training. The dates matched almost, but as flexible as Koenig is, a bit of dates shuffling and ‘BAM’, I was set to go!

Arriving at Shimla was firstly a bit of a culture shock but I soon settled into the environment and the friendliness of the locals and the staff soon made me feel right at home. The staffs were great, always willing to help with every little need you had. Raju the “Master Chef” was great, his food never disappointed and I never (for the three months I was there) had a bad meal, he also often accommodated food enquiries I gave him, “What does this taste like Raju? Well let’s find out. .”

The Koenig Student Apartment I stayed in was all dry and comfortable with free internet access that was surprisingly reliable as well as a TV which had English channels, which was rarely viewed because of studying but it was there for entertainment.

Because of the friendly environment, I felt safe and secure in Shimla, safe enough to wonder the streets of Shimla alone taking photographs of the beautiful scenery, which I often did straight after class and just before dinner.

The training at Shimla was the best I have had, not just because of the small classes, 1-on-1 training, even though I paid for a group (regular track) course but also because the instructors were all very knowable and that knowledge came across in the instructions. I had four separate instructors, all “top notch” in their subject matter and there were never any language barriers I could speak of. I thank all of my instructors for giving me a wonderful experience and for guiding me in the right direction to passing all of the exams needed to qualify me in my chosen areas of expertise.

I would especially like to thank the Center Manager for always being there to answer any questions and arrange excursions on free days to local site seeing locations, as well as for being a friendly and humble person. And also for being the local bank manager for currency exchange even though I only spent £100 in three months (including presents) as everything was catered for.

All in all my three months experience in Shimla was one of the best experiences I have had in my life and I stand by my belief that it is 90% down the people you meet and 10% location that make any experience a positive one and I would recommend Koenig Solutions Shimla to any potential student.

Bahut Dhanyavaad
Paul Harrison