Ryan Connolly – BSc (Hons) in Computer Networks and Cyber Security

Name: Ryan Connolly

From: Donegal

School: Rosses Community School, Dungloe

Current Job: Associate Consultant with IBM, Dublin

I grew up in Dungloe, Donegal, where I went to primary and secondary school. I was interested in lots of things including music, history and art. However, in secondary school, I knew I wanted to study something in computing. I liked the physical aspects of computing, with hardware and networking being my primary interests. I chose my degree because it seemed like it would be a very hands-on learning process.

Computer Networks and Cyber Security teaches a lot of industry standard technologies, which are all incredibly useful to know especially when looking for employment and doing interviews. I completed interesting projects during the degree. This also included the opportunity to work with real computing companies. I made sounds speakers, weather stations and even remotely controlled race cars!

Work placement in Year 3 is one of the best things about the degree. It allows you to get your foot in the door when applying for jobs, make connections and improve your CV. I completed my work placement with the Offaly Country Council and It was definitely one of the best things that happened to me. The people I met while working there were all wonderful, and I learned so much from them.

Database Administration, Active Directory Configuration and Mathematics were some of my favourite modules. Databases was interesting to me, in learning how databases are made and best practices for upkeeping and storing information. Active Directory was one of the most important things I ever learned in education, as its so important amongst many IT Support Jobs. It very interesting to learn and very valuable to know. Mathematics is more of a niche one to like, but re-learning maths at university was lovely. You are provided with so much support in maths, that I found it wonderful and fun to learn.

Whilst in my final year of study in ATU Sligo I managed to gain employment. Having graduated, I now work as an Associate Consultant with IBM in their Dublin Office.

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