Sno-Isle Libraries offers certificate program for entry to IT field

For all those interested in potential careers in the information technology field, Sno-Isle Libraries is offering a second round of CompTIA A+ certification for many entry-level jobs.

The certificate demonstrates an individual’s knowledge of IT and commitment to it as a career. Sno-Isle Libraries piloted the online CompTIA A+ certification program this past year to help 20 people prepare for new careers in information technology.

For this new class, Sno-Isle Libraries program coordinators want to enroll as many as 50 people this time.

They hope to attract individuals from groups that are underrepresented in IT, especially women, people of color, the LGBTQ+ community, immigrants and veterans.

Online applications for Sno-Isle Libraries’ CompTIA A+ training program are open now through Feb. 12.

During the application process, applicants will complete an assessment of their readiness for the program and studies. For example, participants will need adequate access to a computer and the internet.

The CompTIA A+ certificate program is limited to residents of the Sno-Isle Libraries service area, which includes all of Island and most of Snohomish counties. Prospective students don’t need a Sno-Isle Libraries card to enroll, but they will need to be able to get a card.

Orientation sessions will be held the last week in February, with the program sessions starting the first week in March.

Students will have access to study materials. Sno-Isle Libraries’ CompTIA A+ certificate program will meet for about 90 minutes per week for about 25 weeks. The certification curriculum is split into two nine-week sessions with two required exams. Sno-Isle Libraries covers the exam costs for CompTIA A+ certification.

There will be five virtual “learning circles” of 10 participants each, up to 50 participants. Sno-Isle Libraries librarians and IT staff will facilitate the learning circles. Time is built into the schedule to allow participants to complete each test.

Programmers expect to be done with the learning circles by the end of July, with students taking their second test and completing the certificate program in August.

Learning resources will include Lynda.com videos, course notes, practice exams, facilitated discussions, support, socialization and motivation to complete the certificate program.

Successful participants will get information on additional educational opportunities at local community colleges, plus referral information for WorkSource and job-search assistance.

During and after the program, participants can schedule virtual Book-a-Librarian sessions about the library’s job-search resources, including Your Next Job. On completion, they’ll be asked to provide a final assessment of the program.

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