Im looking into getting these certifications. I was just wondering how they are looked at within the programming community/ job markets? Is it something worth looking into or is it more of a converstational/bragging piece?
If nothing, these certifications force you to have a closer look at the language in general, which you probably don't bother with unless you are studying for a certification.
Certifications have got a pretty bad rap due to the plethora of Software Engineers with certifications who can't do a hoot when asked basic questions or asked to write code. But grass root level certifications open up ways for more advanced (respected) certifications like SCWCD, SCDJWS, SCEA etc. Come to think of it, the description of certifications sounds very similar to a CS degree... ;-)
Bottom line: go for it if you can afford it (no point in burning cash in it if you have other things which require attention). If nothing else, it would at least bring you a bit closer to the details of Java programming language and will give you a upper hand when your resume is compared with those who haven't got one.