As Jamel Allen approached retirement from 21 years in the U.S. Army, he faced the daunting question of how to start his life over and launch a whole new career. He’d spent much of his time in the service doing helicopter repair, working for a decade in special operations as a flight engineer. And yet he wondered what he was qualified to do in civilian life.
A Career in Transition
“During my time in the Army, we worked with cutting edge aviation technology, but our computer systems were very legacy, not too advanced,” he explains. “A good friend of mine retired from the Army before I did and he talked so passionately about cybersecurity and certifications and how vast the technology field was, so that piqued my interest.”
He said ACI Learning empowered him to dive headfirst into the pursuit of a new career in technology. He entered the Computer User Support Specialist program.
Why Choose Customer User Support Specialist at ACI Learning?
ACI Learning’s most popular entry-level option, the 50-dayCustomer User Support Specialist program prepares students to start a career in IT by developing competence in IT fundamentals such as networking and basic network security. The training often leads to positions such as desktop support, tech support, network support and general IT support. Along with skills that empower students to confidently work in entry-level IT roles, the program at ACI Learning also prepares for ITIL® Foundation, CompTIA A+, Network+, and Security+ certification exams.
At ACI Learning, the curriculum goes far beyond dreaded PowerPoint, with dynamic offerings that make learning fun and effective, including a combination of instruction, practice labs, randomly generated quizzes, video content, study games, group discussions and more.
“The curriculum was exactly what I needed to get into the technology field,” he said. “And the staff was great. They were warm and friendly when I talked to them. As a service member coming into the civilian world a warm face talking to you about your future is the best thing that can happen.”
A Profitable Change
Allen said the ACI Learning Hubs career counseling resources were critical in laying out a successful path for him.
“Their help building my resume and connecting me to networking events really played a key role in me being able to get a job,” he added
Today, Allen is thrilled to have landed a role as scrum master that pays about $30,000 more than his top salary in the military.
“That's a huge jump for service members,” he said. “You've done a lot for your country and it's good that people like ACI help and support you to get to your next step to have a better life outside the military. If I could say one thing to the staff of ACI Learning, it would be: Thank you. I don't think you hear it enough. You changed my world, and you changed my trajectory for my career."