The CCIE simply opened the doors for me to see the whole world. The year 1995 was very special – I became a Certified Cisco Systems Instructor (CCSI) in May and passed the CCIE lab exam on July 7, 1995.
With that, my company (NIL d.o.o.) achieved the Cisco Gold Partner status. The CCIE achievement was proof of my knowledge, skills and experience from the field. This fact helped me through the years to teach with confidence and to share my real-life cases with my students.
You feel so much better in the classroom when you talk about something you did by yourself! And my students were grateful for that. I also integrated all my experience into the courses we built – both as a subject matter expert and as an instructional designer. CCIE also was of great benefit when I was proctoring the CCSI candidates for over five years. Not only was I evaluating them, I also provided them with my knowledge and skills they needed to grow their careers.
In my role today in Business Development, I intensively use my background to better position learning solutions. However, on the “dark side,” maintaining the CCIE status required on-going study and practice and every two years brought some stress.
Looking into my personal life – although CCIE significantly “intensified” my life due to increased travels – it also resulted in bright horizons. Literally! All the travels made me and also my family and friends much more open-minded. I saw people of the world, helped them with my knowledge, and brought home some of the reflections of these great individuals, cultures, countries and nature. And I still smell that CCIE-garnished chocolate cake my wife and daughter prepared when I returned from my lab exam in Brussels. Isn’t it worth pursuing the CCIE? So, do not hesitate. Go for it!