Bambang F. Indarto

The Journey… The Shares

World’s Youngest Cisco Certified Network Associate is a 12 year old Irtiza Haider from Pakistan!

Posted by bfindarto on September 4, 2008

Irtiza Haider has recently become the known world’s youngest Cisco Certified Network Associate.

Certifications at any level are tough — they are challenging to prepare for and certainly stressful to sit through. So when you hear that 12-year Irtiza Haider of Class 8 has recently become the known world’s youngest Cisco Certified Network Associate, you can’t help but wonder what enabled someone so young to accomplish something so big! “Well,” he starts off, “My father encouraged me a lot to undertake this course. He knew I was always interested in computers and he thought it would be a good way to spend my free time during the summer.”

The CCNA, is a certification that emphasizes on the technology and skills needed to work with networks of 100 nodes or fewer, covering both IP and non-IP networks including IPX and AppleTalk. Moreover, you need to have 80 percent of the questions correctly answered in the 2 hours, in order to pass the CCNA test.

So, did Irtiza find the preparation process difficult? “Yes. It is quite technical and you need to be able to understand theories and concepts, which obviously are not meant for students who are only 12 years old. But I was fortunate to have good teachers and people who supported and encouraged me.”

Irtiza had already enrolled in the CCNA classes back in June of 2007 however he, his father and teacher went to Islamabad to attend the Cisco Academy Awareness Day in Islamabad on June 19, 2007 to learn more about the prospects of the program. “I was very encouraged by Cisco representatives at the event and we got more information about how to proceed further.”

Amongst a lot of peers, they also met with Mu’men Suliman, Area Manager of the Cisco Network Academies. “Moving forward with the great expansion of the Cisco Networking Academy in Pakistan,” says Mu’men in retrospect, “I believe that Irtaza sets the bar of how the young generation is keen to earn the knowledge and expertise of Networking and advanced technologies in a country that will lead the future of the ICT platform.”

The 12-year old boy’s teacher and mentor is Rizwan Dastgir, Curriculum Lead and Academy Instructor at Ahad IT Services (a Cisco Local Academy), in Faisalabad, a city of about 3 million people. In a city well known for its agriculture, it’s surprising to find an IT institute focusing on producing young CCNAs. “There is a lot of talent in Pakistan and Faisalabad is no exception. This institute only helps to provide the people here with a platform.”

As with all things technical, Irtiza had been forewarned by his senior colleagues that the CCNA course would be extremely difficult and very dry, but that only added to the young boy’s persistence. “I found the curriculum very interesting and easy because of the way it was all explained to me by my teacher. I picked it up very quickly.” And if anyone thinks that this young Irtiza had it easy, think again. He spent 9 hour days at the Ahad IT institute, studying and learning. “I spent most of time at the academy during my entire summer vacation. We would start at about 11 a.m. and go on until 8 p.m. with a small break in the middle.”   details…

Source: lanwanword, Saturday, July 5, 2008


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