Mike Jennings | IT Student Testimonial
“Working with Career Services was a real light bulb moment that I’d made the right decision to study with Learning People. It was a great framework and the practical experience of CV and LinkedIn optimisation was invaluable for me, it really helped…”
We catch up with Learning People student Mike Jennings who successfully changed his career from telecoms to an Information Security professional. Mike has studied and passed the CompTIA A+, CompTIA Network+, CompTIA Security+
Tell us why you enquired with Learning People
I was made redundant just before the pandemic hit and it was very difficult at that time to get back into my traditional career role of telecoms. So I was thinking of what I could do next and was also very conscious of my age and being a senior. I had been in telecoms for a long time but I hadn’t kept up to date with my qualifications and it just felt a bit stale, so this was a point where I needed to do something different. I was interested in Information Security and saw Learning People were promoting cyber security as an option for career progression, so I made contact.
Were there any specific skills you were looking to gain or develop by enrolling with Learning People?
I literally started from a blank page. I knew I wanted to move into Information Security but didn’t know which path to go down or where to start.
Was there a particular reason you chose to enrol with Learning People, and did you speak to any other educators or training providers?
I used another provider some time ago to gain an entry level project management certification, but when I spoke with Learning People there were so many more additional benefits. The online learning management system and practice labs were a big draw and it seemed like Learning People had a very good idea on how I could start and then progress in the industry. Plus the Career Services support and links to industry were important to me as I was trying to break into a completely new sector.
Tell us what the career consultation phone call was like for you
One of my big concerns was my age and if it was going to be time well spent embarking on a new career at a later time of life, but my career consultant put my mind at ease by letting me know what the opportunities there were now and what they would be like in the future. He also knew the best way for me to approach the training and the industry.
Tell us about your experience of learning online using our system and the associated labs
The learning platform was broken down into modules which helped me manage my time and check my progression and my goals. The labs were a real plus point too, when I started studying my IT knowledge was very theory based, so it was excellent to gain practical experience at the same time as learning new skills.
Were you able to gain support from our StudentCare™ team when you needed it?
Yeah, no problems at all. If they couldn’t speak to me there and then I’d just leave a message and they got back to me quickly.
Did you utilise any of the course mentoring?
I only actually needed to use it once.
How did you get on with the practice exams and test preparation?
The practice exams and test prep were good. It was really helpful being able to run through the questions as many times as I needed and also focus on my development areas.
Did you attend any of our Live Online Classrooms for your courses?
Yes, I attended the live classroom for CompTIA Network+.
Did you study and work FT – and if so, how did you manage your time?
I studied full time to start with, later on I got a part-time job so I studied and worked while I was doing the CompTIA Security+, but just mapped out when I wanted to complete each certification.
Tell us about your experience of working with our Career Services team, and what did you find most useful?
Working with Career Services was a real light bulb moment that I’d made the right decision to study with Learning People. Marisha was great, I simply can’t fault the Career Services support, it was excellent. It was a great framework and the practical experience of CV and LinkedIn optimisation was invaluable for me, it really helped. My CV was a bit stagnant and wasn’t focused. Marisha really cut through all of that, told me what to do and transformed it completely. Career Services are excellent.
How did enrolling with Learning People affect your career?
It led to getting a new job in the Information Security industry, what more can you say – the target and the aim of enrolling. Full marks.
Tell us about your new job
We provide an Information Security management system for clients and I went through a three month academy program when I started, which was intensive but very good. ISMS.online are growing fast and it’s a really interesting place to be. My role is now security standard tech support, so we form part of a cross functional team that supports sales and customers. There’s now been an update to security standards so we helped roll that out and we have new offerings coming out shortly. I was also asked to look at fulfilling a manager role, which I’ve now taken on, so it’s been a quick progression in a very short space of time.
How has your new job impacted your life?
Well it’s quite interesting, after being in telecoms for so many years and then hitting a crossroad, I’ve now got a fresh perspective on my career, a new role with new skills, and a new pathway. It was a great move. I am a bit older so I don’t have as much career in front of me as some, but what I do now also lends itself to consultancy work in a few years time, so it’s all been a really positive move.
What has been the best part of your Learning People experience?
The learning platform is great, but the biggest asset at Learning People for me was the Career Services team.
What advice would you give to somebody who is thinking about enrolling with Learning People?
I would say don’t hesitate in enrolling. The added benefits far outweigh any concerns that you might have in making the decision. There’s so much help and support to make sure you achieve your goals. I would advise people to embrace the support. The courses are hard work but with all the guidance and the learning platform and the labs it really is a truly supported environment. You’d struggle to do it on your own so I think it’s well worth the investment.