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Beverly: My name is Beverly Loney, and I just graduated in [ITCS] and Cisco systems, as did Tony.
Tony: That’s correct.
Beverly: And what’s your name sir?
Tony: The name is Tony Figueiredo, it’s a mouthful.
Tony: We had fun.
Tony: Helping each other, helping the others.
Beverly: What did you learn?
Tony: That I’ve been around too long.
Beverly: Oh, really?
Tony: I know a little too much.
Beverly: I see.
Tony: But I did pick up a couple of things… routing.
Beverly: You learned routing?
Tony: Well, a few minor points.
Beverly: A few minor points. What about switching?
Tony: No, that I already knew.
Beverly: That you already had down cold, I see.
Tony: That’s one of the great things about this program, it allows you to capitalize on everything that you’ve already known, and brought along with you.
Beverly: But we had fun. We had fun doing the labs, the labs were great. It’s real equipment, you get the real experience, I’d say one of the best parts just the networking with different people in the class. You get to learn from their experiences, you get to talk to them about what they’re doing on their job. My story’s a little different because I was coming back from being out of the workforce for over 10 years. So, very different for me, but really easy to jump back into it with such a great gang of guys. Had a lot of fun, a lot of questions, but things just started to go real fast, come together for us. We had a good class, we really challenged each other and had real fun with it.
Question: What is the most valuable aspect of RAC, to you?
Tony: The most valuable is being able to say: yes, I didn’t just do it, but I’ve been tested for it, and I’ve got a paper which shows that I know how to do it, shows that I’ve done it, because I’m so old that the technology that I pioneered basically with, didn’t exist in my time in terms of scholarity, of education, I was one of the guys on the chain gang making this happen. There was no way to get the education, but I did get the experience from it.
Question: How did Champlain’s scheduling contribute to your experience?
Tony: the Cisco RAC, was challenging in that it was at the same time I was working, and this is a weekend, but the effort was well worth it, and at least the company was excellent as well. That was the compensation of the social life, the bonds you form during the education, those were priceless.
Beverly: Plus there’s flexibility as well. Because if there’s certain times you can’t come, for example I was playing bass every Sunday morning for evaluations, but I could come during the week, lots of flexibility that way, if there were certain times you couldn’t show up at least you could show up at other times, they were gracious enough to let us evaluate at different times. You did bad on an evaluation, you come back and re-evaluate – there was lots of opportunity for flexibility. Which is great for people who work.
Question: What benefits did Champlain’s content specialists bring?
Tony: The benefit that the content specialists bring is that they have real life situations.
Beverly: Experience. These guys have experience, they live in the real world, they know what it’s like to live in the real world, in IT, dealing with networks, and whatever, and so they can give us lots of feedback and they can answer a lot of questions that we may not be able to ask to very many people out there. So that is great, for me, especially coming back into the workforce, wanting to know what’s out there, what are the most common protocols being used now, what are people doing these days in their networking world, because things have obviously changed. It was great to have people to talk to give me the experience, including the guys in the class, certainly asked you many questions.
Tony: I remember those chats, you were wonderful.
Beverly: Tell me more! It was great.