William Wall, Founder of the Certified Novell Engineer Program

So Friday, I had a meeting in Building 18, and guess who I ran into? I ran into the guy that founded the Certified Novell Engineer (CNE) Program for Novell Corporation. He's working over here in Microsoft Learning to help the MSL folks make sense of IT systems certification and clean it up a bit. For those of you who remember the glory days of certification, back in the early 1991, when a CNE walked into the room, there was a sense of awe as it was a such a pleasure to work with these folks. I remember working on Novell 2.2/3.11 Servers in a Token Ring environment for Cooper Industries. My manager at that time, Tony Cernosek, would tell me and Frank McBath, to not ask too many questions, and waste this guys time, because he was expensive. Basically we were told that he was the man, and he's here to fix the network problem, and then exit the building in a flurry of rose petals and hurrahs from a grateful IT department. I remember as a new system administrator that one day, I wanted to get my Novell Certification, and be like that guy. I instead found myself working more with Microsoft LAN Manager 2.0, 2.2 and then eventually moving onto Windows NT 3.5 => to 4.0 => Windows 2000/Windows 2003. I did get my certification as an MCSE, getting the MCSE in NT 4 in six weeks, and getting the Windows 2000 MCSE in 7 months. Although please note, that I was a full time grad student at that time, getting my MBA from UNC Chapel Hill and working fulltime as a Technical Support Manager in Microsoft Premier Support.

Anyway, I'm super excited to see folks like William Wall from our industry join Microsoft, and redesign and revamp Microsoft's certification strategy. I think we're going to see a lot of great things come from the Microsoft Learning folks over the next three years. For those of you who don't have your certifications, but are considering doing so I recommend you take a look at this IDC report on the Microsoft Learning website at https://www.microsoft.com/learning/mcp/benefits/whyhire.mspx. I think with folks like William Wall work here at Microsoft, certifications are going to make a big comeback.

By the way, here a photo of William: William Wall, Founder of the Certified Novell Engineer Program


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