Are you looking for an exciting career in the field of technology? A network administration position might just be the right choice for you. A networking administrator plays a vital role in any organization. This person’s tasks include overseeing the daily operations of essential computer systems and ensuring that they run smoothly so that the organization can communicate and provide information to its employees. In this article, we’re going to take an in-depth look at this profession and help you get the most out of your network administrator degree.

What is a network administrator?

The first responsibility of a network administrator is to ensure that the network is up to date and running optimally. Since companies in almost every industry rely on networks, this means that the job is in high demand. When it comes to specifics, the duties of a network administrator include:

  • Installing and supporting the network system of an organization.
  • Ensuring that the network is available to all users throughout its operation.
  • Ensuring that the network is running at an optimal level of performance.
  • Maintaining the security of the system and the telecommunication network.
  • Training other company employees on how to properly use the hardware and software of the network.

The skills needed to be a network administrator

The duties above require a high level of technical skill, but soft skills also have to be a part of the repertoire of a network administrator. The technical skills include knowledge of:

  • The Domain Name System
  • Cisco
  • Software and hardware installation
  • SQL
  • Windows Server
  • Technical support
  • VMware
  • Microsoft Active Directory
  • Linux
  • System administration

The soft skills you will need on the job include:

  • Organization
  • Attention to detail
  • Writing
  • Research
  • The Microsoft Office suite
  • Team-oriented skills
  • Planning
  • Problem-solving
  • Effective communication
  • Troubleshooting

Most, if not all, of these skills can be acquired while you are studying for your network administrator degree.

The educational requirements of a network administrator degree in Chicago

The educational requirements for the position vary from company to company, but most will require at least an associate’s degree in computer networking. However, you will be better positioned if you have a bachelor’s. You can also use your associate’s degree to find an entry-level role in a company and then work up from there. Earning your associate’s degree is the fastest way to enter the job market within the field, with a program typically taking around eighteen to twenty-four months. If you go for a full bachelor’s, your studies will take about four years, or fewer if you choose to go with an accelerated program.

The opportunities for advancement in your career

Depending on your educational path, you have several ways to advance your career as a network administrator. If you’ve entered the job market with associate’s degree, you can opt to further your studies part time and attain a bachelor degree on the job. You also have numerous certifications and specialization options. Networking has benefited from several technological leaps in the last few decades—from wireless networking to cloud computing. There are also parallel specializations that you can train in, such as network security and operating systems.

The first step to becoming a network administrator

Network administrators often form the backbone of an organization’s information infrastructure. Candidates trained within this field are in high demand, and there are plenty of opportunities to specialize and earn a higher salary. It is a very stable job with numerous positions available across the country. After all, as long as you have institutions and networks, you have employers looking for candidates that can manage those networks. If you would like to take the first step towards earning a network administrator degree in Chicago, contact us today for more information regarding our computer networking program.