Status Report–25% to degree completion

03.08.20112 Min Read — In Career

It’s difficult to believe, but I am now working through Midterms week of my first of two semesters for my Masters of IT Management program. Glancing back at my blog, I see that my last post on December 12th essentially lamented the fact that I needed to return to school. To bring you all up to speed, after having a wonderful Christmas back in California with my wife, I started my coursework at the Illinois Institute of Technology. My semester has been pretty busy with various technical projects, but I’m happy to say that I’m on track to graduate from my program in December.

My coursework has been pretty interesting so far. Here’s a run-down of the courses I’m taking

  • Project Management for IT – This course teaches Project Management techniques through lecture and hands-on group projects. It is designed to prepare me for the Project Management Professional (PMP) certification
  • Network and Internet Technologies – This course focuses on teaching the ways that the networking technologies beneath networks and internetworks functions. It also is tied to the CompTia Net+ certification
  • Databases – This course teaches how to design, normalize, and build relational databases in a variety of software systems. It is primarily focused of Oracle technologies.
  • Web Design – This course teaches HTML5, CSS3, and Javascript with the aim of designing and developing a modern web site. I’m actually using these lessons to build my social-media resume at
  • Information Security Management –This course teaches industry and government standards and practices for security digital information. Much of the content comes from the NSA. This course also helps me prepare for the CISSP (Certified Information Systems Security Professional) exam.
  • Object-Oriented Programming – In addition to my IIT coursework, I’m still working on my online Java development training through the O’Reilly School of Technology.
On the job front, I am still as active looking for work as I was prior to beginning my program. I’ve applied for quite a few positions and internships over the past few months, and I think that I’ve got some good leads. Ideally, I would like to start full-time work this summer and complete the remainder of graduate school part-time, but I’ve also seen some promising internship opportunities. We’ll have to see how this works out.

Although most of my attention in the past few months has been dedicated to school, I’ve really been trying to keep my life in balance. My wife, Erica, is a tremendous help in this regard. I’m also glad to be in such a great parish and RCIA group. Speaking of which, this Sunday is my Rite of Election in the Roman Catholic Church. Essentially, the purpose of this rite is for each catechumen and candidate to be formally welcomed by the apostolic hierarchy of the church. I’ll be heading to the Holy Name Cathedral in downtown Chicago to be formally welcomed by Cardinal Francis George. I’m looking forward to seeing the Cathedral. It’s quintessentially “Chicago.” In 1926 Al Capone and his gunmen killed “Hymie” Weiss in front of the place, and a bullet is still embedded in the cornerstone.

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