Active Directory GPO’S, PoE switches, variable length subject masks, VM cloning, layer 2 tunnel protocol …. did you get any of that?
Three young up-and-coming experts in Dart’s information technology department do and better yet they know how to implement them.
Michael Parsons, Ravi Campbell, and Reynaldo Powery, are team members from Dart Enterprises Ltd.’s (DE) IT department. Each of them make a lot of effort to ensure they understand cutting edge technologies so they can do their jobs well. Recently all three IT specialists enhanced their qualifications, and the management team at DE couldn’t be more pleased. Michael Parsons, a technical support specialist, is no stranger to working hard to develop further in his field. He completed a work experience programme at UCCI (Computer Technician), which first brought him into the Dart Group of companies on a part-time basis. Following this, Michael pursed a Bachelor of Science in Network and Communications Management at DeVry University in Orlando, graduating in October 2010.
Mr. Parson joined Dart Group in November 2010. Realising he needed more training to be able to service the complex networks used in Dart, Michael set his sights on completing a Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) exam, which he successfully passed in 20 May, 2010. This exam certifies Michael for networking and deployment, a proficiency that is high in demand.
“It was difficult to complete, this course required four different text books and many hours of studying. The exam itself was off island in Tampa, and consisted of various types of technical questions including hands-on simulations.
Students were given a scenario and told to fix it. I had to draw upon and apply all of my knowledge to troubleshoot, assess exactly what was wrong, fix it, and then assess again to ensure it was working. It was challenging,” Mr. Parsons said.
Michael was encouraged by his team members, especially Christian Briere, who is the information systems security manager, who as Michael explained “really helped me to prepare for the exam and have an idea of what to expect.” Mr. Parson plans to continue his training, having already signed up for the Cisco certified network qualification which will entail a set of three exams.
Ravi Campbell, an application support specialist at DE, pretty much knows every BlackBerry application that is worth downloading. He recently completed two certifications with support from the company; his BlackBerry Certified Server Support Specialist designation on 31 May (which required passing two exams passes) and the IBM Certified Associate System Administrator exam on 13 April.
His education began with an associate degree in Computer Science from UCCI, followed by a Bachelor of Arts in Management Information Systems at University of South Florida in 2007. Joining the Dart team after graduation in the summer of 2007, Mr. Campbell found the company faced several challenges especially with rapidly growing number of employes who required support for their BlackBerrys.
“The number of users expanded well over 50 per cent in the last two years,” he said. He also explained because BlackBerry platforms are constantly evolving, it’s beneficial to have someone in-house to know more about the whole system.
“I completed a Digicel sponsored training course, which was very helpful,” Mr. Campbell said. “However, I soon realised my BlackBerry certification would be beneficial, which turned out to be a smart move as this training was critical when it came time to upgrade our system.”
Since Mr. Campbell has dual roles at Dart that require him to administer servers in house, it was important for him to gain additional IBM qualifications.
“Learning more about IBM’s Lotus Domino has been challenging, yet very rewarding. My training has helped tremendously with the demanding task of managing Dart’s email servers. I completed my IBM Certified Associate System Administrator course and have one more exam to finish before moving to the next level,” Mr. Campbell said. He is also trying to complete the Microsoft MCITP Server Administration Certification by the end of first quarter in 2012.
Pioneering his way through the IT world, Reynaldo Powery, Technical Support Specialist, has been with Dart for more than 6 years. He currently services computers and BlackBerrys, and completed his Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS) in July. This is the entry level certification that allows students to then continue on with further Microsoft courses. Not wasting time, Reynaldo is already working on other certifications.
He is also diligently working on completing his Computer Science Associates Degree at UCCI.
“With only four courses left to do, the end is in sight!,” Mr. Powery said. However, Reynaldo doesn’t plan to stop there. “I’m going straight into my Bachelor’s afterwards. With all of my training and experience at DART, I think I’ll have a decent head start,” he said.
With training and development being a key focus of the organisation, it’s not surprising Dart is both pleased and supportive of these three dedicated team members. The Senior Manager of DE’s IT Department Isabel Lawson congratulates them, “We are very proud of Michael, Ravi and Reynaldo for achieving these accomplishments and for all of their hard work and dedication. They are an asset to our IT team and the Dart Group of Companies,” she said.
What’s next for these three up-and-coming technical whizzes? The complex challenges at Dart and the IT world will keep them busy – but with their enthusiastic determination and commitment to continuous learning, Michael, Ravi and Reynaldo will be leading the way.