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I’m from the Alpena, Michigan though I’m currently working overseas for General Dynamics in England...

Shaun Carriveau (Usa), MCSE 2003 15 Jan to 01 Feb 2007

I’m from the Alpena, Michigan though I’m currently working overseas for General Dynamics in England. Due to the competitive nature of the IT field having a higher end certification is almost a prerequisite to be able to move to a higher position along with having the required experience.

Many of my coworkers had attended Koenig for various Microsoft classes and all of them came back with nothing but great thing to say about their experiences. One of them sent me the link of Koenig webpage and I was amazed with the range of certifications that were offered. I choose the MCSE because where I work we mainly use Microsoft products.

After comparing Koenig with other boot camps in England and the US there was no competition in the value to cost ratio. For the same boot camp in the US I would had to pay double the price and all I would be getting is a certification with no real training on what the material was really about and how to apply it. In England I would’ve been paying four times the price for the training that would be the same as it would be in the states. The reason being that most of the boot camps are a very limited number of days and there is no way they can teach you all the material that is required for the exams.

At Koenig the courses you take aren’t just for the exams. It’s to give you an understanding of the material. My instructor was excellent. He took the time to ensure that I had a good understanding of all of the material and he was very knowledgeable in all of the areas that he was teaching. It wasn’t like he was reading at book to me. He showed me how to apply what I had just learned and the reasons why Microsoft does it that way. As many people know there is a way of doing things and there is a Microsoft way of doing things. This was the most relevant when it came to the exams. You need to make sure that your answers are the Microsoft way. The training brings all of this into perspective. I may have been at an advantage in this area because most of this stuff was all new material to me so I wasn’t going to be tainted by practicing bad habits that I had learned from past experiences. I think that this is one of the reasons that many people don’t always do well with some of the Microsoft Certifications.

India is a different culture than what many people from western countries are probably accustomed to. I was pretty excited about coming because I enjoy seeing different cultures and coworkers had attended their boot camps in Goa and said it was excellent, so I took their suggestion.

I choose to stay at the Cidade de Goa hotel. I was amazed at how nice the hotel and staff were. Everyone was courteous and eager to help me with anything that I needed. They had a decent broadband connection available for use that is pretty reliable. There is also room service, which I relied on quite a bit since I didn’t really have time to go down to eat in any of the 3-4 restaurants that are in the resort. I did manage to set aside 20-30 minutes after I got back from class to go down to the pool for a quick swim before I went back to the room to study.

The facility at which the classes are held in is well equipped with every thing that is needed for the courses. It is air conditioned and is usually a comfortable temperature. It’s also quite clean and well maintained each night. So when you come in the next morning there isn’t yesterday’s lunch hanging out in the trash can. The service at the facility is beyond excellent. Every morning we were served coffee in our class rooms without having to ask for it. They also have drinks on site if you decide you need a cold drink of some kind. If you needed anything all you had to do was let someone know what it was you were looking for or needed and while you were in class they would be out searching to either get what ever it was that you needed or find out where you could get it.

There are a few things to note however about coming to Koenig for training. The first and probably the most important thing to remember is that since you’re coming for training everything else should be secondary. That is to say that you need to have your head screwed on strait so as to avoid the disappointment of not achieving what you’re there for, to obtain the certification. This is especially true if you’re going on the Super-Fast Track, which is what I was on. I would go to class from 9-5 every day with an exception of one Sunday, go back to the hotel and sometimes have a quick swim in the pool then be up until 2.00-2:30 each night studying and going over the material that was being covered in the class.

Secondly, don’t expect that your certifications are going to be handed to you. You have to be willing to put in the effort. My instructor was willing to work with me after I expressed to him that I would do whatever was needed to achieve getting this certification in limited amount of time that I had. He was a little bit skeptical that we could get it all in at first because of my limited background. After getting through the first couple courses and exams I think he was confident that it was possible because of the amount of work that I was willing to do to complete all of the courses and certifications. It wasn’t all down to me however, my instructor was excellent. He was very well organized and knew most everything that you could possibly know about the subject. We always had set goals on what he wanted to achieve each day and he ensured that we didn’t stray off track.

Koenig will give you everything you need to succeed and then some. Because of the quality of training that I had received and my dedication to achieving my goal of getting my MCSE, I was even able to go a step further and get my MCSE: Security specialization. The training went far beyond my expectations and allowed me to exceed my own. I also hope that I will be able to come back for more training here in the future and I would definitely recommend this training to anyone who takes getting their certification seriously.