An associate’s in IT degree teaches technology students the critical thinking and problem-solving skills needed to diagnose, document and troubleshoot IT problems. After graduation, students will understand computer hardware, software, and networks. They will excel at working in teams, offering customer service and resolving complex issues. Here are some sample jobs available to graduates with an associate’s in IT.
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Most network engineers install and maintain traditional and cloud-based servers. This will involve industry standard network operating systems (NOS) such as Linux, UNIX, Windows Server, Novell Netware and Macintosh OS/X Serve. It will also involve either enterprise software or Software as a Service (SaaS). Network engineers work under the supervision of network and server architects to manage and enhance network design, security, and performance. Daily projects may involve feasibility testing for new software and cost studies for data migrations.
IT engineers perform a wide range of advanced duties. They may focus on infrastructure automation and maintenance, which will involve coding, patching and release management. They will participate in the development, support, and execution of infrastructure operations and health reporting for optimal performance. IT engineers usually monitor KPIs for infrastructure health, integrity and security. Some IT engineers work closely with developers to manage the software life-cycle. This means they will work with applications like MongoDB, Microsoft SQL, and Oracle Database.
Desktop Support Technician
Helpdesk and desktop support techs provide daily support to end users through problem analysis and ticket resolution. They may physically help users set up and fix computers, workstations, network devices, and peripheral devices. They must maintain helpdesk logs and inventory records. They will need a strong understanding of information security, internet technologies, and troubleshooting software. Desktop support techs must have effective communication skills to provide technical explanations to non-technical users. They will need critical reasoning skills to identify problem patterns, analyze options and make recommendations.
Business support specialists usually work with specific projects, technologies and data systems. For example, they may work with managers to understand operational needs to recommend adjustments or new solutions. Others may work with database administrators and programming analysts to integrate, migrate and retire software solutions. Many business support specialists rarely do hands-on work because they spend their time discussing and researching systems specs, design techniques, data flow diagrams, industry compliance, and corporate guidelines.
The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) shares how electronic health records allow health care professionals and patients to quickly access, update and share records. EHR technicians collaborate with billing supervisors to ensure accurate financial protocols and services. They may create custom data queries for management to research billing discrepancies and produce reports to internal users and stakeholders. EHR technicians regularly meet with IT and compliance managers to audit and maintain adherence to HIPAA and HITECH requirements. This often touches on security concerns for processing and sharing requests for release of medical information.
Other possible jobs include software support, data analyst, IT consultant and field network technician. An associate’s in IT degree will include valuable classes like computer security, programming logic, website development, operating environments, and networking fundamentals.