In our previous blog post, we explored the first in our series of Prestige Academy programmes, namely, BCom (Digital Marketing). This week we are going to find out more about Prestige Academy’s Information Technology programmes.

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Prestige Academy currently offers two Information Technology programmes; Higher Certificate in Internetwork System Specialisation (1 year) (ISS) and the Diploma in Information Technology Network Integration Specialist (2 years) (ITNIS.)

To help us understand the two programmes better, we interviewed our very own IT-ninja lecturer Mr Charles du Toit. Before we dive into our interview, let’s briefly summarise the two programmes.

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1. WHICH SCHOOL SUBJECTS ARE COMPULSORY TO STUDY IT?

There are no specific subject requirements, but IT or computers (CAT) subjects can give you an advantage. 

2.WHERE DO YOU START WITH YOUR UNDERSTANDING OF IT AS A STUDENT?

Start by understanding computers which include hardware and software. Once the student has an understanding of that, then they start learning about networking. Networking is the primary key component to bring everything together and to understand networking one must know how it functions and how it ties all the hardware and software components. That is the key that is discussed in the two years. That is why the qualification is called Information Technology Network Integration Specialist because it is all about how the networks connect and interconnect with the Internet which is a network.

 3. ABOUT HARDWARE AND OPERATING SYSTEMS, WHAT IS THERE TO KNOW AND HOW BIG IS THE INDUSTRY?

Hardware is the first module that is covered in the first term of the IT programme.  Hardware is the basics and the starting point of everything.  Operating systems and hardware work together, once you have that knowledge it will build from there with the other modules that will be covered at a later stage.

4. ARE THE STUDENTS TAUGHT ABOUT PIRACY, HACKING, VIRUSES AND MALWARE IN THIS COURSE?

Yes, they are, in theory, they are taught about the concept of hacking, cracking and freaking which all leads to security. Security is taught in the programme, and in the second year, one of the modules is all about security software.

5. WHICH MODULES ARE YOUR FAVOURITE TO LECTURE?

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“Project Management as it brings out real-life experiences resulting in a better understanding amongst students.  Another favourite module is Wireless Networking. The students find this module very exciting.”

6. WHAT EXPERIENCE DOES ONE NEED TO APPLY FOR A JOB?

Working with technology empowers our students with ample experience to deal with all kinds of troubleshooting. Solving problems is critical, and the more experienced you become, the easier it is to identify solutions. If you only have theory knowledge, it will take longer to fix the problem. Our students also partake in our internship programmes to gain valuable industry experience

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7. WHAT CAN YOU EXPECT IN THE IT WORKPLACE?

The structure of our IT programmes is our most significant advantage compared to other institutions.  We offer so much with regards to quality and quantity. Quality is the practical component of the programmes (knowledge) while quantity is the duration of studies. 

8. WHY STUDY IT AT PRESTIGE ACADEMY AND NOT ANOTHER INSTITUTION?

My best advice is to talk to our former students who completed their studies in our IT programmes. You will only receive positive feedback! The programmes are contact based not computer based training. Lecturers are there to help the students in whatever they are doing. Every time the theory is done the students are showed how to do it practically. In that sense when you are looking where to study IT you need to ask yourself: will I gain knowledge? Or the combination of knowledge & skills?  This combination of knowledge and skills makes the Prestige Academy IT programmes your best choice and will ensure a more rounded IT Specialist.

Our students are employed before they have graduated (some have jobs before they have even completed their studies).

9. WHAT TYPE OF JOB OPPORTUNITIES ARE THERE FOR STUDENTS?

  • IT Network Specialist
  • ICT Security Consultant
  • ICT Security Specialist
  • Internal Computer Audit Specialist
  • IT Security Administrator
  • IT Security Analysis
  • IT Security Engineer
  • Network Manager
  • Systems Manager
  • Network Security Consultant
  • Senior Network Administrator
  • Linux Administrator

According to statistics there are 10 top positions in SA of which 3 of the top 10 available jobs falls within the IT sector.  We want to start off by also saying that for the past 7 years ALL our graduates are full time employed after completion of their course.

The most common job title for a person who completed the ITNIS diploma is a NETWORK ADMINISTRATOR/MANAGER for a small to medium enterprise business.

The work of the NETWORK ADMINISTATOR is first of all

  1. keeping the whole organizations computer network up to date. 
  2. They must make sure that all system runs smoothly and efficiently.
  3. Their tasks include performing component installation, system updates, system repairs, and system testing.
  4. They must update the organization’s software regularly, and are responsible for backing up data and information relevant to their computer system.
  5. They have to install security software, such as virus protection and firewalls and run updates on them on a regular and timely basis.
  6. They must be able to troubleshoot network issues.
  7. They have to be familiar with their organization’s information technology (IT) hardware and infrastructure.

Therefore such a network administrator will need to have complete knowledge of network architecture of the company.  This is a highly paid job with salaries staring on a junior level in the range of R15000+

All of the above knowledge are obtained in an upmarket lab where students will practically implement the theory they learned to work as a functional Network Administrator.

Still unsure if this could be the right choice for you? Please join our Winter Workshop or Open days to learn more. Or visit our website to read more about our IT programmes.