CIS 328 Class Discussion Board
Re: CIS Career Profiles - Stephen Shar Telecomm 2004

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Posted by Alex Park on October 21, 204 at 22:45:19:

In Reply to: CIS Career Profiles posted by Fred Gallegos on September 30, 1999 at 12:34:32:

: This folder is for the summary of interviews of
: practitioners and/or Alumni of the IT profession
: Students are asked to interview their contact and
: add their summary to this folder.

: (1) Name
Stephen Shar ,
I graduated this past spring (Spring 2004), Major - CIS, Track -

: (2) Position
I am currently an associate.

: (3) Organization
I am currently with KPMG (Accounting Firm)

: (4) Years involved in IT?
I have been involved in the IT field for over 6 years. I've worked as a help desk analyst ever since I was in high school, and moved my way up the ranks throughout college. I was a network engineer for Sony Pictures Digital Entertainment (when I was in Gallegos's CIS328 class), then recently
got hired as a UNIX Administrator at Northrop Grumman Corporation (Aerospace). After college, I decided I've learned and dealt enough with the technical aspects of IT. I wanted to move more towards business (high-level/consulting IT), so I decided to join one of the top accounting

: (5) Most Rewarding Experience within their Career?
The most rewarding experience is the networking aspect. I've met so many important people throughout my career and still have maintained the relationships and connections. It is very important to maintain good relationships because your next boss might be sitting right besides you. I know that if I ever wanted to switch my career, I can always count on my
networking/peers to help.

: (6) Advice to those wishing to enter this profession?
Those wishing to enter any type of profession requires internship experience. I was talking to a few of my associates (graduated from U.S.C.) and realized how important internships are. From their ring of 20 U.S.C. undergraduate students, 18 of them had internship experience, and all 18 of them got hired at the big 4 accounting firms. I was impressed by this
statistic and truly believe that students should really get involved and apply for internships. I know Dr. Gallegos sends out frequent internship/job posting and students should realize the importance and meaning behind his persistent e-mails. Some students disregard internships or might not realize its value, but do get involved ASAP.
In addition, you still need to maintain a "good" G.P.A. to get
through any recruiting process. Your G.P.A. is one factor that will set you apart from others. There are other factors such as attitude, passion, extra-curricular activities (i.e. internships, etc).

: (7) Most important skills to have as an IT professional?
The most important skill to have is 'passion'. Dr. Gallegos
probably emphasizes this characteristic, but I would like to throw some more weight on it. I always had passion throughout college (although a few of my colleagues didn't) and it has certainly improved my job opportunities. Managers and upper management of companies want to see students with a lot
of enthusiasm and passion for the job. Some of my recent colleagues are still searching for jobs because they never had enough passion throughout college. Passion is what drives excellence. If you enjoy what you are doing, you will definately succeed.

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