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Staying Connected at Northern Kentucky University

July 3, 2014 at 9:07 am PST

Northern Kentucky University is among the fastest growing universities in Kentucky. It hosts over 15,000 students with about 13,000 undergraduate and 2,000 graduate students. The goal of the wireless program at NKU is to provide secure, robust and ubiquitous wireless access throughout the campus, both indoors and outdoors. This ensures that students always stay connected and feel at home. The classrooms are equipped with smart technology to ensure that the teachers can benefit from technology when collaborating with students. The IT team has blanketed the libraries, the classrooms, the dorm-rooms as well as the outdoor areas with Wi-Fi. In the previous blog in 2012, we described how the Cisco 7.5 release allows networks to recover with no client re-authentication in the rare event of your primarily wireless LAN controller goes down.

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At a Glance:

Located in: the Highland Heights Kentucky

Number of students: 15,000 of which about 2000 stay in residence halls

Number of teachers/staff: 2000

# WLAN clients: Approximately 8500 concurrent clients

Access-Point Model and Units:  1200 units of AP models including AP702W, 3502, 3602, 3702, 1550 and a few older Access Points which are being phased out

Controller Model and Units: 2 Pairs of WiSM2 operating in 7.6.120.0

Switch Models: Various models 2960, 3650, 3850, 3750X and 6500

Prime Infrastructure: 1.4.2

Mobility Services Engine: 7.6

 Deployment Details: We talked to Christopher Johnson, the Senior Infrastructure Systems Analyst II at Northern Kentucky University to capture some of his thoughts around their choice of this solution and the associated benefits. Read More »

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Crucible and Chrysalis: The personal value of the expert-level certification process

Introduction

The choice to begin pursuing an expert-level certification is often made lightly. After experiencing the training, study and testing process of the associate-level and the professional-level certifications, it is understandable to expect that the expert level is more of the same; more advanced, but essentially a logical progression. This is a fair conclusion and is more accurate than it sounds, but it’s important to consider that the ‘more advanced’ aspect goes beyond the topics. The process itself is more involved… and that changes everything. Read More »

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Why I Certify

March 17, 2014 at 9:00 am PST

I’m a addicted to certifications. I’ve always been good at taking tests, but I didn’t realize how rewarding it could be until relatively recently. I had been in IT for 15 years as a sysadmin and certification had never seemed valuable to me. In 2009, I made the shift from working primarily as a System Engineer to working primarily as a Network Engineer. In 2010, I had the opportunity to attend my first Cisco Live. Attendees of Cisco Live! have the option to take a certification exam for free, so I figured I would take the CCNA composite exam while I was there. I borrowed the Cisco CCNA Official Certification Library from a coworker (all 1500 pages or so) and proceeded to spend the months before the conference reading them. (I took an earlier version of the exam and read an earlier version of the books, but the links are to the current versions).

Read More »

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#CiscoChampion Radio S1|Ep4: Cisco Certifications

#CiscoChampion Radio is a podcast series by Cisco Champions as technologists, hosted by Cisco’s Amy Lewis (@CommsNinja). This week we’re talking about Cisco Certifications.

Listen to the Podcast

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Featured Guests:
Cisco Champion: Stephen Rodriguez (@WiFiJanitor)
Cisco Subject Matter Experts: Antonella Corno, Errol Hayward (@errolhayward), Matt Saunders (@citylifematt)

Highlights:
Developing Cisco Certifications from the outside in, looking at currrent job roles in the market
Certified Partners vs. individual Specialist Certifications
Cisco Learning Network
New Cisco Certifications SME Recruitment Program
How Cisco works to protects certifications from being compromised
How far you can go with emulators before you need actual equipment
Cloud Lab access and other Learning Labs
IT Training Videos and Seminars
Network Programmability Training
How certifications change experience in the workplace Read More »

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Built Cisco-Tough CCIE is 20 years strong

Cisco Champions ask Challenging Questions.  This is the second in a blog series presented by Carlos Dominguez and Jimmy Ray Purser.  Check out the first blog by Carlos here

I recently had an opportunity to sit down with our Cisco Champions to discuss a range of topics about technology.  Here’s a question that was top of mind for Edward Henry:  

“The CCIE is easily recognized as one of the most elite certifications in the industry. It’s currently turned 20 years old, where do you see the program in 5 or 10 more years?”

What a great question! Let’s take a quick look at why the CCIE program was created.  Cisco announced the CCIE program on Sept. 27, 1993, in a press release  where John Chambers, said:

“The CCIE Program begins where other vendors’ certification programs leave off. It can be compared to completing a university course versus taking college entrance exams. Prospective CCIE candidates must be highly qualified just to enter the program, and then, after taking an intensive troubleshooting course, must pass a rigorous hands-on lab test conducted by senior support engineers. This very stringent set of requirements ensures that only the best professionals are selected.” Read More »

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