My employer, Pluralsight, has just launched a big training promotion for the summer called “Camp Pluralsight.” I don’t normally use this space to shill for my boss, but whether you’re into marketing promotions or not, this is a great idea for you and your brain.
Head over to https://offers.pluralsight.com/summer to sign up. This is open to current subscribers, too,and there are prizes, so it’s worth checking out.
What you’ll get, for free, is access to about three dozen courses, with around a dozen of those focused on IT Operations. The deal is this: you complete a course a week (sometimes more), and you earn prizes. For example, in Week 1, if you complete two courses, you could win an Apple Watch. In Week 2, watch at least 200 minutes of training and you could win a gift certificate. That kind of thing.
And it’s more than just training – they’ve thrown some fun in there, like taking pop culture quizzes on our Smarterer-based assessment platform (which will eventually be providing a massively improved technical assessment capability to customers). There’s even a weekly challenge where you’re asked to take an introductory course on coding in a web-based, interactive environment, and it will not hurt you to learn some code.
Anyway, screw the prizes.
You should do this because it’s a wonderful, guided opportunity to improve your skills and broaden your resume. We’ve got courses on project management, Linux, and a ton more. Whether you care about winning a Han Solo In Carbonate Mini Fridge (!!) or not, this is a wonderful (and free) opportunity to stretch your neurons a bit. No, you’re not going to learn an entirely new technology domain – and that’s kind of the point. You’ll learn a little about a lot, and that’s a good thing. If you find something useful, you can dig in and learn more on that topic – or move on to the next one.
- Review your knowledge of networking at a low level – and maybe learn how to teach this stuff to a newcomer or your kid.
- Get started with Ethical Hacking.
- Dip your tows into certified-level project management, to see if it’s a worth acronym to add to your collection.
- Brush up on Win2012R2 installation and configuration.
- Get the essentials of PowerShell under your belt.
- Start learning Linux administration.
- Find out exactly what Docker is and why you might care.
- Learn to explain virtualization to noobs.
- Start down the path of earning a Cisco CCNA title.
- Discover the fundamentals of Desired State Configuration.
- Learn how to set up self-service VM provisioning in System Center 2012 R2.
It’s a pretty broad swath of IT Ops topics – and frankly, your brain could do with all of them floating around in it. Whether you’re in this for the prizes or not, I truly think you should get in there and take some of this training over the summer. It’s a Good Idea.
And if you like it, the company will offer a $199 annual rate for access to the entire Pluralsight library, which is under $17/month. If you’re already a monthly subscriber, they’ll let you switch to that annual rate and save some bucks.