Meet Vincent Cesca: New TechRoots Blogger

November 25, 2015

Bita Beigishah

Hello! My name is Vincent Cesca. I’m a new intern and TechRoots Blogger at Phoenix TS. You will see blog posts from me in the near future so I wanted to introduce myself.

First I’ll tell you a bit about myself, then tell you the story of my career change, and journey into the world of information technology.

About Me: Vincent Cesca

I have a pretty wide variety of interests, first and foremost of which is gaming. I play games of all types on both console and PC, including Elder Scrolls, FTL, Metal Gear, Mario Kart, Final Fantasy, and many more games.

I’m also a musician and record songs with various instruments in my free time. I love building and modding all kinds of things from cars to computers (that’s my PC in the photo above!) I have a ton of hobbies and don’t want to bore you listing them all. Instead let me tell you about my tech background!

My Journey Into IT

My love for technology began when I was very young. On my 5th birthday my parent’s gave me a Nintendo GameBoy with a copy of The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening. I played this game relentlessly, and was fascinated that this little machine let me go on such a wild adventure!  This love of gaming led me to slowly learn about PCs and electronics in general. I repaired my gaming consoles when they broke, rewired cars for engine swaps, and experimented with electronics to make music.

Although I always loved technology, my career didn’t begin there. My fascination with how things work initially led me towards automotive work. In high school, I spent my evenings after classes apprenticing in a chassis shop learning to build race cars. I loved working with cars (and still do), but eventually the shop closed due to the owner passing away, and I found myself working in a county park.

I went to school off and on while I worked there, still unsure of exactly what my calling was. From there I ended up transferring to the county highways tree crew, and became a DNR certified tree care expert and professional driver. While my job was fun and challenging to begin with, over time I found it lacked the kind of mental challenges and creativity I enjoy. I talked with a friend of mine about my desire to change careers, and he suggested I might try a career in IT since I’ve always liked gaming and tinkering with PCs and electronics. For some reason I had never really considered a career in IT, but as I began researching and studying I found that I absolutely loved what I was doing and was really good at it too! I had found my calling and began to pursue a career change.

CompTIA IT Fundamentals and Studying for A+

I prepared for a career change by studying CompTIA’s IT fundamentals. Although I had a lot of PC knowledge, I figured this was a good place to start so I could be sure that I had the basics under my belt. I easily passed this exam, using only the CompTIA CertMaster program for a quick review. After this I decided to take on CompTIA’s A+. For this, I used a book from Mike Myers, YouTube videos from Professor Messer, and some information from GTS-Learning. I self studied for this exam, and I passed my 220-801 exam within about 3 months or so.

Unfortunately, a work accident drastically slowed me down. I had a serious laceration from a chainsaw on my writing hand, and between a hospital stay, surgery, and recovery time I was pretty out of it for a solid two months.

As I began recovering, I went back to school at Howard Community College, returned to work, and got really interested in learning to use Linux. All of this delayed my work on the A+ 220-802 exam, but I’ll finally be taking it next week and I look forward to moving on and learning more about networking and security.

The Howard Community College Cyber Defense Club

During one of my classes, I had a stand in Professor named Athar Rafiq. I spoke with him about my goals and asked him for advice. He invited me to join the schools cyber defense club, and offered me an intern opportunity doing work for the club. I worked with some awesome students who welcomed me with open arms, and would teach me anything they knew. The knowledge I gained in the club, and guidance received from Professor Rafiq gave me that extra encouragement I needed to be successful in changing my career.

Why I Work Here

I decided that I wanted to work for Phoenix TS because every time I went there for an exam it was such a welcoming environment. After doing a little research I found that the company’s core values aligned with mine as well. While browsing the site I saw that there was an internship opportunity available and immediately applied to it. I was offered the internship, left my old job to start working here and have loved every minute of it!

Looking towards the future, I plan to learn more about cyber security and networking. Since I’ve joined HCC’s cyber defense club I’ve developed a real passion for learning how to get electronic devices to do things they weren’t designed for, finding security flaws and figuring out ways to fix them.

I look forward to sharing what I know in future posts and hope you look forward to reading them as much as I enjoy writing them! If you have any questions, feel free to comment below and I’ll be happy to answer. 

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