For anyone who has taken a course with me you already know that I am a BIG fan of Humble Bundle! If you have never heard of Humble Bundle, it is a website that sells games, e-books, software and other digital content usually at a steep discount while supporting charities in the process. Most of the e-book bundles cost around $15.00 for 15-20 e-books... so it's a steal and you can help out, say The Raspberry Pi Foundation, while you are at it.
I usually focus on the e-book bundles as I find having e-books readily available when I need to dig into a topic for class, for my own curiosity, or when learning a new topic is really nice. As I like to escape to the mountains (insert...NO INTERNET) on holiday quite frequently and it comes in handy to be able to download the a book or two onto a tablet for reading while relaxing in the fresh mountain air.
Currently, from 08/17/2020 to 09/07/2020 there is a great e-book bundle that I think many of my CNM Computer Information Systems (CIS) students would find useful in their training.
Programming and Productivity by Mercury Learning and Information
*Disclosure: I only recommend products I would use myself and all opinions expressed here are our own. This post may contain affiliate links. If you use these links to buy something I may earn a commission. Thanks for supporting my efforts.
This e-book bundle contains 22 e-books total with many matching several of our CIS/CS programs here at CNM.
System Administration Program
-- Cloud Computing Basics
-- Bash Command Line and Shell Scripts
-- Basic Electronics (Go IoT!!!)
Cyber Security Program
-- CyberSecurity A Self-Teaching Introduction
-- Computer Security and Encryption
-- Computer Concepts and Management Information Systems
-- Network Security and Cryptography
Computer Programming Program
-- Python for TensorFlow
-- Data Structures and Program Design using C++
-- Python Basics
-- TensorFlow 2
-- Python 3 for Machine Learning
-- Data Structures and Program Design Using Java
-- Data Science Tools
-- Flowchart and Algorithm Basics
-- Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and Deep Learning
-- Programming Fundamentals Using MATLAB
-- Data Visualization for Business Decisions
I would recommend any student in a CIS program that would like to build a private e-book library pick up this e-book bundle while it last.
Programming and Productivity by Mercury Learning and Information
Another Busy Summer...
I will be teaching a total of three 1 week workshops, a series of 1 hour workshops at CNM, and speaking at a conference in Vancouver WA. Details of the activities are included below and links to the events can be found on the calendar on the homepage. If you have questions about these workshops or anything else we are working on please post in the comments below...
My workshops are...
IoT and the Raspberry Pi at UNM
Cisco IoT Connecting Things at Cabrillo
Cisco IoT Security at Coastline
Here is the PDF flyer for the NM CS PD Week June 3-7, 2019 at UNM
I saw this news article on the WWW.USNEWS.COM website today (See link at bottom of this posting) and just had to read it knowing that IT/CIS related degrees from community colleges were going to be listed as one of the four degrees that are better earned at a community college. I was wrong, not because it isn’t true but simply because IT/CIS was only mentioned in the article not listed as one of the four degrees.Here is why I think IT/CIS degrees from community colleges should have been on this list.
1. IT/CIS workers are in demand. I have read several articles lately that show worldwide shortages in the field currently and for the foreseeable future. Expertise is needed in computer/server support, networking, programming, and cyber security. All of these are available in some version at most community colleges.
2. IT/CIS workers can make good money with a two year degree. Students that have completed Associate degrees in IT/CIS can typically find employment in the field with starting salaries anywhere from $35,000 – $45,000. Additionally with experience and continued training in the form of industry certifications, usually paid for, in part, by the employer, it is not uncommon to be making over $50,000 right about the time a 4 year degree student is just finishing school.
3. IT/CIS coursework at community colleges is typically aligned with industry certifications. The more the better is my take on this. Both community colleges that I have taught at have made curriculum changes to align as many courses with industry certifications as possible. This is a huge advantage to the students that not only complete the degree but take the time to study for and pass the industry certifications. Imagine the advantage you will have over fellow job applicants when you have an Associates Degree with 4-8 industry certifications on your resume. It’s Huge! Most employers use industry certifications (or lack thereof) to weed out resumes for a job posting. With the certifications you are more likely to get the interview than without.
4. The overall cost of your community college education will be significantly less than a four year university education. This cost savings combined with 2 additional years in the field making a good income adds up to a huge head start on your career and life in general.
When you combine the lower cost of community college education, industry certifications, good to great starting/career salaries in an in-demand field it all adds up to a great option for students looking to build a great career and livelihood.
I do have a couple of words of caution however.
1. If you don’t like computers then please do not bother. You will hate it and head for the exit about the 10th acronym into your first class. You have got to love computers to be good in this field. My most successful students just absolutely love everything about computers and simply can’t get enough when it comes to learning more about them.
2. When looking at a particular community college make sure the IT/CIS degrees have aligned their courses with industry certifications. Make sure the CompTIA A+ and Network+ are covered in the courses. If you are working on a networking degree make sure they are aligned with Cisco certifications. Other certifications from the likes of Microsoft, Linux Foundation, CompTIA, and others are all excellent indicators that the coursework is aligned with what employers are looking for.
3. Playing video games is not the same as being responsible for the design, implementation and maintenance of a well run network or computer system. This also applies to programming and development work on video games. It is far more involved to build a video game than it is to play one. Don’t get me wrong here, I do love playing a good video game. However, playing video games does not in anyway correlate with being a good IT technician, IT engineer, or developer.
Until next time.
US News Article