Achieve CCNA, then what?

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I am looking into pursuing the CCNA-CCNP certification track as part of a
career change.  I live in the Southern US. I have some experience with
networking from the WinNT4 days (late 90's) but only as far as the Microsoft
world is concerned, no real experience with Cisco routers etc.   I know
about subletting and IP addressing but not how to work with the hardware. I
want to do home study and buy some equipment to work on at home as part of
my studies.  I noticed that many of the jobs out there today want
experience, at least 2 years.  So what can I expect after I do all the hard
work and achieve the inital certification, the CCNA.  How will I get a
decent job? What can I expect my role to be with a fresh CCNA but no Cisco
experience except for what I learn on my home lab?  Do most companies give
you a chance to show your stuff?  Any comments?

Thanks,

Tom Brown




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