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Finished CCNA. Should I now go for Cisco certifications or MCSE?

I have recently completed school and have attained my CCNA and have completed one of the four required exams for my CCNP. My question is this: In your opinion should I concentrate on finishing my Cisco certifications or change my focus and start on my MCSE? Money is an immediate concern -- although making good career decisions is a primary concern. Any advice would be appreciated. Thank you.

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It seems to me that Cisco is currently a better-paying, more employment-likely certification than the MCSE. Unless your predilection is for network and server maintenance and operations, rather than working in the WAN/LAN area on networking infrastructure stuff, I recommend finishing your CCNP, getting a job, and slowly working your way toward a CCIE. There is still no single IT certification that is unequivocally worth more than a CCIE per se (and none as hard to attain, either -- be warned that this is a serious exam, and that two or more attempts to pass at $1,250 a pop, plus travel, will probably be required).

Good luck,
Ed

This was first published in January 2002

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