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Bill Sallada

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Hard Work and Passion land Adrian Vincent a new IT Career

Posted by Bill Sallada on Mon, Aug 15, 2011

This update comes to us from Claude Green, the Career Services Director at the Houston MyComputerCareer Campus.  Claude wanted to highlight Adrian Vincent this week because Adrian applied for a position along with other candidates who were more experienced, but he landed the job because he impressed the employer with his hard work and passion for doing the job right.

"This week I wanted to highlight Adrian Vincent.  Adrian was working on a project with Capital One that ended last Friday.  He had been there for a few months supporting a migration.  He called me to tell me the project was ending and he needed to find additional employment quickly.  I sent his resume over to C3 Solutions and Adrian was called in for an aptitude test and then called back two days later for an in-person interview.  The hiring manager told Adrian that he had interviewed candidates with twice as much experience but half the passion.  Adrian convinced the hiring manager to give him a shot.  Adrian told him if after 30 days he couldn’t cut it then they would part ways.  Adrian started work the very next day.  At the end of the day the hiring manager gave Adrian a key to the building and said I liked everything I saw from you today and you asked all the right questions .…so welcome aboard!!!"

Prior to coming to, Adrian had worked in construction for 20 years.  He had aspirations to get into the IT industry, and we were able to help him realize meet those goals at  Adrian is also an aspiring golfer.  Sadly, we were unable to help him with that dream, but at least we helped him get started in the IT industry.

My Computer Career

Corporate HQ: 5511 Capital Center Drive, Suite 204, Raleigh, NC 27606 PH: 866.606.6922

Tags: Career Services Updates, News Houston, Success Stories student Phil Smeby shares his success story

Posted by Bill Sallada on Thu, Jul 21, 2011

A few weeks ago, out of the blue, Phil Smeby responded to a routine follow-up email from the Career Services Department in Raleigh.  He also included, as an after thought, a written account of his experiences at the school in case we might want to add it to our website.    

Are you kidding Phil?  Of course we'd love to add it to the site.  Phil is a great student and we glad to have been able to help him begin to acheive his goals in life.   Without further ado, here's Phil's uncut, unedited testimonial that he emailed to us:

"My name is Phil Smeby, and I am an Operation Iraqi Freedom Veteran. After being away from my family for approximately three years, my wife and I decided that I needed to leave the military. With an economy that is still in recovery I soon found myself unemployed and looking for work. The trouble that I had was that even though I was qualified for the jobs I was applying for, I found it extremely difficult to get a call back from the hiring manager, yet alone get an interview. I went through a couple of months where I did not get a single call back from anywhere I had applied, and I realized that I needed to head back to school to get some tangible skills that I could use to market myself in today’s competitive job market.

I had just gotten accepted into a different school when I decided to attend an open house meeting at with a family member. The first thing that stood out to me was the enthusiasm by everyone on the staff. After the open house meeting, I decided that my other school would have to wait, and that I would attend as it is designed to help people who are seeking a career change.

I started a week later on February 19, 2011, and after five weeks I received my first Microsoft certification. One of my greatest memories of is taking my first certification test and passing it. I now had something tangible from my education at After another five weeks I was able to take another Microsoft test, however, I did not pass it on the first attempt. Nevertheless, because has a “test pass guarantee” I was able to take the certification test again, and I was able to easily pass. Eleven weeks into the school, I was now eligible to work with career services.

The Career services department with is phenomenal. They work with your individual circumstances to help you land a job whether you are an IT guru or an IT newcomer like myself. After I finished my mock interview with career services they immediately sent out my résumé to various companies. The very next day I woke up to my cell phone ringing from one of the companies that had received my résumé, where I answered some simple IT questions and scheduled an interview. Immediately afterward I got a phone call from career services telling me that they had sent out my résumé, and I should be receiving a call from this company. I was so excited to inform my career services counselor that I had already talked with them and scheduled an interview. Every day I was getting a call from various companies wanting to interview me for work in the IT field.

Career services doesn’t stop with helping you get your résumé into the hands of potential employers, they also spend a great deal of time helping you learn how to be proactive in your job search. This approach gives you much more control over where you could potentially work, and working together with your career services counselor ensures a higher chance of success.

Using the tools given to me by career services, I used a contact I had to help me get an interview with a company called Clairvia. I was contacted by the hiring manager of Clairvia the next morning and scheduled an interview that week. The interview was conducted by three different managers and lasted the whole morning; however, I was offered a job right on the spot, which I gladly accepted. It took me a week and a half of working with career services to secure my dream job. I immediately called career services, and they helped me cancel my remaining interviews. definitely gave me the skills I needed to enter a new career field, and I look forward to completing the advanced courses at It is clear that the instructors, Bob, Charles, and John have a passion for IT, and they truly go far beyond what is required of them to make sure that you feel comfortable with the course materials. When I told Bob that Clairvia needed someone with SQL database experience, he offered to setup a workshop on SQL for me to ensure my success. He offered the same to all the other students. I have not yet seen an instructor who cared so much for the success of his students. While the course material at is geared to help you pass the certifications, Bob will constantly drill into your minds how everything works in the “real world”.

The difference in my life since working at Clairvia has been dramatic. While I cannot claim to make a six digit salary, neither do I expect to, my wife has been able to quit her job to stay at home with our two children. We are also currently purchasing our first home, 2700 square feet with five bedrooms, which is a huge improvement over our current two bedroom apartment. Best of all, we are no longer living paycheck to paycheck. I have accomplished all this in just 14 weeks, and with the advanced courses that I have just started, I now feel in control of my career and my life.

I would definitely recommend to anyone who is serious about a career change into IT. The course work is designed to get you into a job as soon as possible, which is what makes different from a local community college or university. However, it is once you get your first job where the program really shows its strength because you can use your work experience combined with the education of to put yourself on track to enter senior positions in the IT world."

My Computer Career

Corporate HQ: 5511 Capital Center Drive, Suite 204, Raleigh, NC 27606 PH: 866.606.6922

Tags: IT jobs, Success Stories