I'm 2 semesters away from getting my AA, then i'll be transferring to USF to pursue a BS Computer Science degree. So i'm about 3 years away from starting my full time career. Here is a list of certifications i would like to acquire.

Network +
Security +



Among these certifications, which ones "DON'T" require re-certification. and will still be usable 3 years from now?

My plan is to get 1 certification during each summer vacation. So i want to make sure i'm earning only the certificates that will stick with me beyond graduation.

Your MCSE is the only one that will stick with you beyond graduation, but even then, it will be version specific, so really how useful will an MCSE on windows 2003 going to be when you get out? By then we'll likely have 2008 and 2011 (if current release cycle stands).

If you aren't ready to use them, they aren't worth the up-front expense.

I got a response from another forum, that CompTia certifications don't expire and would be worth having by graduation. Any truth to that?

I did have other people tell me that the mcse and cisco certification are not worth getting early because of newer versions, as you confirmed.

the CompTia versions don't expire, but as an IT person, they show very little value if any at all to me. My company doesn't even recognize them at all when it comes to education/training.

I guess if your going for like a phone support type job they would be useful, but if your "alternative" is an MCSE or CCNA, they will likely be worthless to you.

There are also those that try to "stack" certifications. I don't know how well that works, but in all seriousness if you can pass the CCNA, the first 2 chapters of their "boot camp" is the network+ info, so if money isn't an object, might as well get it in preparation for your CCNA later anyway.

yes, i'm most likely going to save the mcse and the cisco certification until after graduation it sounds like those are the most prestigious and i have zero work experience in the IT world. So maybe the Comptia certs will be a good starting place and be just enough to land a internship or part-time job while I finish my degree.