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Poly Specialist Diploma worth my time?

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Old 13-01-2019, 12:50 AM   #1
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Poly Specialist Diploma worth my time?

hi all,

need some advice from the veterans out here. Thank you in advance !

Background Info
I graduated with a dip in engineering from a local poly at around march 2017.

From Oct 2017 to August 2018 I worked at a govt agency as an auditor (10mo). As you know having a diploma in the public sector means you'll be treated very differently from the degree holders.

So i quit and decided to change to a field I'm more interested in/with a future: IT Security.

I joined an IT security company in Sept 2018 (~4mo now). I've learned so much and got some certifications (Comptia IT Fundamentals +, Network+, tentative Security+ in Feb). As i didn't have any formal IT background i decide to take the fundamentals and network+ certs 1st to "strengthen my base".

Future plans: Start on my part time degree in IT security in 2020.

So while i have some time in 2019, i was thinking if it would be worth getting a specialist diploma from local polys (SP or NYP), esp the SP 1, since my work is in NIDS currently. Or should I keep my focus on getting certifications, like CCNA, CCNA security, CEH for this year.

The pace of learning is really really fast in the company (MNC with intranet dedicated for employees to learn) i went in a cold turkey and now have a good basic understanding of networking and security. So is it worth the time/money getting this specialist dip or should i just save up for the degree. Will it make a difference in my future hiring process, or my pay grade?

Last edited by lovespoo; 13-01-2019 at 01:04 AM.. Reason: more info
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Old 13-01-2019, 06:03 PM   #2
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hi all,

need some advice from the veterans out here. Thank you in advance !

Background Info
I graduated with a dip in engineering from a local poly at around march 2017.

From Oct 2017 to August 2018 I worked at a govt agency as an auditor (10mo). As you know having a diploma in the public sector means you'll be treated very differently from the degree holders.

So i quit and decided to change to a field I'm more interested in/with a future: IT Security.

I joined an IT security company in Sept 2018 (~4mo now). I've learned so much and got some certifications (Comptia IT Fundamentals +, Network+, tentative Security+ in Feb). As i didn't have any formal IT background i decide to take the fundamentals and network+ certs 1st to "strengthen my base".

Future plans: Start on my part time degree in IT security in 2020.

So while i have some time in 2019, i was thinking if it would be worth getting a specialist diploma from local polys (SP or NYP), esp the SP 1, since my work is in NIDS currently. Or should I keep my focus on getting certifications, like CCNA, CCNA security, CEH for this year.

The pace of learning is really really fast in the company (MNC with intranet dedicated for employees to learn) i went in a cold turkey and now have a good basic understanding of networking and security. So is it worth the time/money getting this specialist dip or should i just save up for the degree. Will it make a difference in my future hiring process, or my pay grade?
My recommendation is to skip all poly specialist diploma for information security. My experience with them is they are usually very shallow and out dated.

I would also advice skipping CCNA, CCNA security and CEH unless you are working specifically with Cisco products since you have Network+. CEH is usually a waste of time especially if you have got Security+.

I would recommend you to look up AWS certifications and security pathway. Cloud is the way moving forward and there is a serious shortage of folks with cloud skillsets and knowledge, and applying security perspective to it. In addition you should also look at how take advantage of cloud services and products to automate mundane security tasks with regards to Governance Risk Compliance (GRC).

https://aws.amazon.com/training/paths-specialty/

Last edited by fmylifereader; 13-01-2019 at 09:26 PM..
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Old 13-01-2019, 10:07 PM   #3
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My recommendation is to skip all poly specialist diploma for information security. My experience with them is they are usually very shallow and out dated.

I would also advice skipping CCNA, CCNA security and CEH unless you are working specifically with Cisco products since you have Network+. CEH is usually a waste of time especially if you have got Security+.

I would recommend you to look up AWS certifications and security pathway. Cloud is the way moving forward and there is a serious shortage of folks with cloud skillsets and knowledge, and applying security perspective to it. In addition you should also look at how take advantage of cloud services and products to automate mundane security tasks with regards to Governance Risk Compliance (GRC).

https://aws.amazon.com/training/paths-specialty/
Thanks for the info !

Yeah the modules do look a little under whelming.

I'm thinking of getting the Specialist Cert from NUS instead: http://scale.nus.edu.sg/programmes/S...rtCourses.html

and the modules are stackable towards the Bachelor of Technology degree in Cybersecurity. What do you think ?

Also, thanks for the info on cloud, i did get some exposure in that area. However a different team handles cloud security. I'll keep that in mind for my study plan !
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Old 19-01-2019, 04:30 PM   #4
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Thanks for the info !

Yeah the modules do look a little under whelming.

I'm thinking of getting the Specialist Cert from NUS instead: http://scale.nus.edu.sg/programmes/S...rtCourses.html

and the modules are stackable towards the Bachelor of Technology degree in Cybersecurity. What do you think ?

Also, thanks for the info on cloud, i did get some exposure in that area. However a different team handles cloud security. I'll keep that in mind for my study plan !
hmm I have no visibility into the content from the modules listed. But from reading the general description, it doesn't seem to offer any depth as well.

I think if you are going for the actual degree instead of the certificates, the modules for cybersecurity specialization (major requirements) look more relevant.

http://www.nus.edu.sg/nusbulletin/sc...rity/?pdf=9720

Anyway if you are planning to the technical career route, any computer science degree that covers data structure and algorithms, operating systems and networking will be good enough. The idea is learn how programs, systems and networks work. If you know how they work, you have already won half the battle since security knowledge is built on top of them.

But if your job environment or career aspiration is at the client side doing vendor management and coordination or Governance Risk Compliance (GRC), then the skill sets required are quite different
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