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Networking for Military Personnel: Building a Career in Network Administration

As military personnel, transitioning to civilian life and finding a new career path can be a daunting experience. However, the field of Information Technology (IT) offers a variety of opportunities for individuals with a military background. One such opportunity is in network administration, which involves managing and maintaining computer systems and networks.

In this article, we will explore the possibilities of building a career in network administration as a military veteran, national guard member, or military spouse. We will cover various aspects of education, certification, career development, and job search strategies that can help you succeed in this field.

Furthermore, we will share success stories of military personnel who have found their footing in network administration and are thriving in their careers. With the right tools and resources, you too can find a fulfilling and financially rewarding career in network administration.

Join us as we delve into the world of network administration and explore how you can use your military experience and skills to excel in this industry.

Military Personnel and Network Administration 

Military personnel have a unique set of skills and experiences that make them valuable candidates for careers in network administration. In this field, individuals must have a strong understanding of computer systems and networks, as well as the ability to troubleshoot and solve complex problems.

Several military personnel have experience working with technology and computer systems during their service, making the transition to network administration a natural fit. Additionally, the discipline, attention to detail, and teamwork skills learned in the military can translate well into this field.

For those interested in pursuing a career in network administration, there are many opportunities available. From working as a network administrator for a large corporation to managing computer systems for a small business, the possibilities are endless.

Moreover, national guard members and military spouses can also benefit from the flexibility of many network administration positions. With the ability to work remotely and on flexible schedules, individuals in these roles can balance their military commitments and personal lives while still building a successful career in IT.

Career Development in Network Administration for Military Personnel 

Career development is a crucial aspect of building a successful career in network administration. As a military veteran or member of the National Guard, there are many resources available to help you develop your skills and advance in your career.

One option is to pursue further education and certifications in network administration. Several colleges and technical schools offer degree and certification programs in information technology, which can provide you with the necessary knowledge and skills to succeed in this field. Additionally, certifications such as the Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) can demonstrate your expertise to potential employers and open up new career opportunities.

Another important aspect of career development is building a professional network. This may involve attending job fairs and industry events, connecting with other network professionals on social media, and joining professional organizations such as the Chamber of Commerce or networking groups for military communities. By building these connections, you can gain valuable insights into the industry and potentially even find job opportunities.

Finally, it’s essential to develop your soft skills as well. Effective communication, problem-solving, and teamwork skills are all essential in network administration and can help you succeed in your career. Many veteran employment programs, such as Hiring Our Heroes, offer resources and training to help military personnel and veterans develop these essential skills.

Education and Career in Network Administration 

Education plays a vital role in building a successful career in network administration. While some network administrators may have started their careers without formal education, many employers now require a bachelor’s degree in information systems or a related field.

Fortunately, there are many education and career pathways available to military personnel interested in pursuing network administration. Many universities offer online degree programs, which can provide the flexibility needed to balance military commitments with personal life. Additionally, the Post-9/11 GI Bill™ provides financial assistance to military veterans pursuing higher education.

In terms of career pathways, network administration offers a variety of job titles and career paths. From entry-level positions such as network technician to more advanced roles like network engineer or systems administrator, the opportunities for growth and advancement are vast. Furthermore, with the rise of artificial intelligence and the growing importance of cybersecurity, the demand for skilled network administrators is only expected to increase in the coming years.

For those interested in pursuing a career in network administration, it’s important to stay up-to-date with current trends and technologies in the industry. Continuing education and training can be an effective way to gain new skills and remain competitive in the job market.

Job Titles and Average Salaries for Network Administration 

Network administration encompasses a wide range of job titles and responsibilities. Some entry-level positions in this field include network technician, help desk technician, and computer support specialist. As individuals gain experience and expertise, they can advance to more advanced roles such as network engineer, systems administrator, or network architect.

The average salary for network administrators varies depending on the job title and level of experience. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary for network and computer systems administrators was $84,810 as of May 2020. However, salaries can range from $51,000 for entry-level positions to over $130,000 for experienced professionals.

It’s important to note that salaries can also vary depending on geographic location, company size, and industry. For example, network administrators working in the healthcare or finance industries may earn more than those in the non-profit sector.

Overall, network administration offers a variety of job titles and salary ranges, making it a promising career path for military personnel looking to transition to civilian life.

Cisco Certified Network Associate and Other Certifications 

Obtaining industry-recognized certifications can be a valuable way for military personnel to demonstrate their skills and expertise in network administration. One popular certification is the Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA), which validates an individual’s ability to install, configure, and troubleshoot medium-sized routed and switched networks.

In addition to the CCNA, there are many other certifications available for network administrators. These include certifications from vendors such as Microsoft, CompTIA, and Juniper Networks, as well as certifications in specialized areas like cybersecurity or cloud computing.

Obtaining certifications can be a valuable way to stand out to potential employers and demonstrate a commitment to ongoing learning and professional development. Additionally, many certification programs offer training and preparation materials to help individuals succeed on the certification exam.

For military personnel, there are many resources available to help them obtain certifications. For military members looking to earn certifications, the Department of Defense provides a range of programs and resources. Many universities and training programs offer courses specifically designed to prepare individuals for certification exams.

Soft Skills and Their Importance in Network Administration 

While technical skills are essential for a career in network administration, soft skills are also crucial for success in the field. Soft skills are interpersonal skills that enable individuals to work effectively with others, communicate clearly, and manage their time and resources efficiently.

One essential soft skill for network administrators is communication. Network administrators often need to communicate technical information to colleagues and non-technical stakeholders, so clear and effective communication is essential. Additionally, network administrators must be able to work collaboratively with colleagues from different departments and backgrounds.

Another important soft skill is problem-solving. Network administrators must be able to troubleshoot technical issues quickly and efficiently, often under time pressure. Being able to analyze complex problems and develop effective solutions is critical for success in this field.

Time management is another essential soft skill for network administrators. Network administrators must be able to manage multiple tasks and priorities simultaneously, often in a fast-paced and high-pressure environment. Strong time management skills enable network administrators to prioritize tasks effectively and meet deadlines.

Finally, adaptability is an important soft skill for network administrators. Technology is constantly changing, and network administrators must be able to adapt to new tools and techniques quickly. Being able to learn new skills and adapt to changing circumstances is essential for success in this field.

So while technical skills are important for network administrators, soft skills are also crucial for success in the field. Communication, problem-solving, time management, and adaptability are all essential soft skills for network administrators to develop and maintain throughout their careers.

Job Search Strategies for Military Personnel

When it comes to finding a job in network administration, there are various job search strategies that military personnel can utilize to land their desired roles. Here are some of the most effective strategies:

  1. Use Military and Veteran Hiring Programs: Many organizations offer job search assistance and hiring programs for military personnel and veterans. Examples include Hiring Our Heroes, which hosts job fairs for veterans and military spouses, and the Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s Hiring Our Heroes Corporate Fellowship Program, which offers training and job placement assistance for transitioning service members.
  1. Leverage Your Network: Networking is a crucial part of the job search process. Military personnel can leverage their professional network, both within the military and in civilian life, to make valuable connections and learn about potential job opportunities. Joining industry associations and attending professional events and conferences are excellent ways to expand your network.
  1. Use Job Boards and Search Engines: There are many online job boards and search engines that cater specifically to military personnel and veterans. Examples include, Indeed’s Military Transition page, and the Veterans Job Bank. These platforms can help job seekers find open positions and apply for jobs online.
  1. Attend Job Fairs: Job fairs are a great way to connect with potential employers and learn about job openings. Military personnel should attend job fairs that are specifically tailored to their needs, such as those hosted by Hiring Our Heroes or the Department of Veterans Affairs.
  1. Customize Your Resume and Cover Letter: When applying for jobs, it is essential to tailor your resume and cover letter to the specific position and company. Military personnel should highlight their relevant experience and skills, particularly those acquired during their service, and emphasize their ability to adapt and excel in new environments.

By utilizing these job search strategies, military personnel can increase their chances of finding the right job in network administration. With the right combination of education, experience, and job search skills, a career in network administration can be a rewarding and fulfilling path for veterans and active-duty military personnel alike.

Hiring Our Heroes and Other Veteran Employment Programs 

Hiring Our Heroes is a nationwide initiative launched by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation to help veterans, transitioning service members, and military spouses find meaningful employment opportunities. This program provides job fairs, hiring events, and career advice to military personnel and their families. In addition, it offers resources for employers to connect with veteran job seekers and provide them with training and support.

Other veteran employment programs include the Department of Labor’s Veterans’ Employment and Training Service (VETS), which provides job placement assistance, training opportunities, and other resources to help veterans transition into civilian careers. The Veterans Affairs Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment (VR&E) program provides job training and employment support for veterans with service-connected disabilities. The Transition Assistance Program (TAP) provides resources and training to help service members transition out of the military and into civilian life, including job search skills and assistance with creating resumes and cover letters.

These programs can be valuable resources for military personnel and their families as they navigate the job market. By connecting with these programs and utilizing the resources they offer, veterans can gain access to a wide range of job opportunities and receive support and guidance throughout the job search process.

Success Stories of Military Personnel in Network Administration

Military personnel possess unique skills and characteristics that make them stand out in the field of network administration. Many veterans have successfully transitioned to a career in network administration using the skills they acquired while serving their country.

The success stories of military personnel in network administration serve as inspiration and proof that, with the right skills and opportunities, it is possible to thrive in this field. With dedication and hard work, military personnel can achieve their career goals in network administration. These success stories are not limited to just a few individuals. Several military personnel have found great success in network administration, thanks to the skills and training they received in the military.

Overall, military personnel have a unique skill set that can be invaluable in the field of network administration. Their discipline, leadership skills, and ability to work under pressure make them an excellent fit for the job. By pursuing education and certification in network administration, veterans can successfully transition to a new and fulfilling career after their service to their country has ended.


Military personnel possess valuable skills that are highly sought after in the network administration industry. They have the necessary technical knowledge, adaptability, and discipline needed to excel in this field. Furthermore, pursuing a career in network administration can be a great option for military personnel transitioning to civilian life, as it offers a wide range of job opportunities and competitive salaries.

Education and certification are key components to success in this field, and military personnel have access to a variety of programs and resources to help them achieve these goals. Soft skills, such as communication and teamwork, are also essential in network administration and should not be overlooked.

When it comes to job searching, there are many strategies that military personnel can use to increase their chances of success, including networking, utilizing online job boards, and attending job fairs. Additionally, there are numerous veteran employment programs, such as Hiring Our Heroes, that provide support and resources to help military personnel find employment.

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