How Can I Become a Network Architect?

Network ArchitectWith the demand for qualified computer professionals, the option to become a network architect is an increasingly popular option to enter into a personally and professionally rewarding career that will be in demand for the long-term. Individuals with a variety of different backgrounds, education, experience, and skills can find positions that are suited to both qualifications and interests.

Network Architecture Education Requirements

A bachelor’s degree is the most common requirement for education, although some employers will consider candidates who have several years of experience and/or an associate’s degree in place of the education requirement. Undergraduate degrees that can help to prepare a graduate for network architecture positions include information technology, computer science, and computer engineering. In any of these programs, students are likely to complete courses in architecture protocols and standards, network technology, systems integration, and LAN/WAN technologies.

Most positions in network architecture require a bachelor’s degree. Some positions, however, may require an advanced graduate degree for consideration. In addition to a collegiate education, some employers may also require or prefer candidates who have professional certifications in the field.

Certifications in Network Architecture

One desired certification is often the CCAr (Cisco Certified Architect) designation. Additional information on the CCAr and other certifications can be found at the Cisco website.

In addition to professional certifications, many universities and colleges offer certificates in fields such as network architecture to students who have majored in another field or are looking to gain advanced knowledge and skill. Most certificates are 12 to 16 credits focused solely on topics in network architecture.

Skills and Qualities of the Network Architect

The nature of a position in network architecture requires for specialists to have a diverse range of knowledge. While an education is the first step, many students find that having skills in critical thinking, creative thinking, written communication, oral and interpersonal communication, mathematics, decision making, and problem solving can be particularly helpful for completing courses and other curriculum requirements.

In addition to these types of soft skills, future network architects must have all of the technical aptitude and skill necessary in order to maintain systems, create systems, and manage infrastructures. Additional information on skills and other requirements for careers as a network architect can be found at the Association of Information Technology Professionals website.

Career Options in Network Architecture

A network architect is an essential part of operations in all types of industries and for all companies that rely on computer technology to complete any processes and other operations. Network architects are responsible for the creation, building, and managing of all computer system networks. Network architects handle everything from the development of a program to the design and testing of systems to communicating observations and reporting findings and conclusions.

Related Resource: MBA in IT

Whatever type of industry a computer professional is looking to enter into, there is a position for all levels of education, skill, and experience. To become a network architect, future experts can consider how to meet the possible requirements of individual employers, companies, and industries in order to achieve every career goal.