Monday, February 3, 2014

Rio Salado College is CompTIA Authorized Academy Partner

Gordon Inman and Heather Tyler at the
RSC Tempe Testing Location
Rio Salado College and CompTIA, a non-profit trade association for information technology professionals, are teaming up to provide students with a reliable pathway to success in the IT industry.

The CompTIA Academy partnership ensures that Rio Salado classes are teaching applicable skills, and it offers significant discounts on the cost of CompTIA certification exams.

“Discounts offered through the CompTIA Academy Partner program vary by certification,” said Gordon Inman, Rio Salado’s Director of Computer Technology. “Rio Salado students pursuing A+ certification save about 55% of the normal price for each exam, and Network+ certification students take the test at about half price.”

CompTIA certifications are recognized by thousands of companies as a predictor of employee success, and the CompTIA Academy Partner Program provides Rio Salado with resources and guidance to ensure the college’s IT curriculum remains relevant.

“We are currently focused on the CompTIA A+ certification,” Inman said. “We offer two computer maintenance courses, BPC170 and BPC270, which prepare students to take the A+ exams. Each course focuses on one of two exams required for the A+ certification. We also offer a LAN course, CIS190, which prepares students interested in the CompTIA Network+ certification.”

Students who take the CompTIA preparation courses will earn college credits that can be applied toward a certificate or degree program.

“What’s great is that our CompTIA prep students aren’t limited to industry certification,” Inman said. “All of the classes are for-credit and can be applied toward our Computer Technology: Networking program.”

Students are encouraged to combine industry certification with a college degree program to best prepare them for career success.

“Industry certification focuses on specific areas of the IT industry. For example, the A+ certification focuses on computer maintenance and repair,” Inman said. “Earning a certificate of completion from Rio Salado goes above and beyond the CompTIA certification, as it explores other important topics that individuals need to be successful.”

“The certificate of completion from Rio Salado uses the input of the local IT industry to select the right courses to help prepare students to enter the IT workforce,” Inman said. “Together they provide a way for students to showcase their knowledge and skills in specific areas of IT via the industry certification and their overall preparedness for working in the IT field via the certificate of completion.”

According to Rio Salado Testing Coordinator Heather Tyler, the CompTIA certification process is perfect for working adults looking for advancement opportunities or those who need to update their skills to change careers.

“I love that we are able to offer our students cost savings and testing options that are flexible and tailor-made for the working adult,” Tyler said. “And I am really excited about the opportunities these certifications will afford our students.”

In addition to preparing students for CompTIA certification, Rio Salado students who already hold industry certifications can have those certifications evaluated for college credit.

“Rio Salado has a fantastic credit for prior learning program in place to accept approved certificates and licenses for class credit,” said Tyler. “We can offer credit for CompTIA certifications as well as industry certifications offered through Adobe and Microsoft.”

Visit riosalado.edu/testing for more information on CompTIA certification and credit for prior learning options at Rio Salado College.

This story can also be found in the February 3 edition of the Tempe Republic. 

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