So this is it. No more student, Ive finished and submitted all my CodeClan continuous assessment work for my PDA. Its just a matter of waiting for my certificate to appear in the post and I’ll have a Professional Development Award in Software Development.
I guess it can go in the drawer with my Being In Electrical and Electronic Engineering, my Diploma in Design and Innovation and my Certificate of User Interface Design and Evaluation.
Have I become an education junkie?
Anyway its a good feeling and I'm pleased with what I have been able to achieve. The Careers Lady at school should be eating her hat by now, given she suggested my only hope was trying to get into the back door at a college. Oh how we laughed!
I went to Fortrose Academy on the BlackIsle for my secondary school. A great little school although I didn't really appreciate it at the time, I had fun. I stayed all the way through to 6th year and left with a jolly array of subjects including 8 Ordinary grades, 5 Higher’s and a Certificate of Six Year Studies.
The big players of Maths and Physics are there along with Technical Drawing and Art and Design. I guess I was destined to be an Engineer. My qualification became bigger and better from here on in...
RGU - BEng Honours Electrical and Electronic Engineering (1993)
When i finished school in 1988 and I headed off to Aberdeen and enrolled in Robert Gordon's Institute of Technology (pre University Days) to study for a Bachelors in Electrical and Electronic Engineering. I had sufficient qualifications to get in without an Interview (or go in via the back door). It was a four year course with honours. I did the first 3 years and a chance conversation with a lecturer suggested that Shell UK were looking to take students as a part of an industrial placement. I applied and was lucky enough to get super rare industrial placement. I said goodby to my fellow class mates and went my own way with Shell for a year. I returned and completed my honours year in 1992 and graduated in 1993, RGIT had now become RGU so I was leaving with a University Honours Degree…
Open University - Diploma in Design and Innovation (2001)
Roll on a few years and while browsing the Open University website a course in Design and Innovation caught my eye. It was a 2 year Diploma and could be studied remotely with Tutor Marked Assignments and some exams. It was all about product design and how to evaluate products, and innovate new ideas. The course was quite pricey but I approached my boss at the time and Aker Kvaerner agreed to pay my fees and sponsor me. So free education so long as I did not leave within two years. This course I really enjoyed and learnt a heap about product design and innovation. The course was a real inspiration and I really took to the method of teaching, where you were actively following a set course and had to submit an assignment roughly every month. and then at the end of the year there was a couple of exams. I graduated with my Diploma in Design and Innovation and had another certificate.
Open University - Certificate in User Interface Design and Evaluation (2009)
A few years later while back browsing the Open University website a course in User Interface Design and Evaluation interested me. At the time I was heavily involved in creating a new User Interface for Topside Control Systems for offshore, so my thoughts were hey this might help make better control system user interfaces. Another discussion with my boss and Aker Solutions were sponsoring me and paying for the course, More free education and of course I was tied in for another two years. This was another great course with Tutor Marked Assignments and an exam at the end. I graduated with a Certificate in User Interface Design and Evaluation.
So this was the winding road to my main qualifications and brings us back to this year and my PDA in software Development with CodeClan.
I have done many other shorter courses over the years in various subjects. I did another couple of courses with the Open University paid from my own pocket, First up Digital Photography (I couldn't pass this by my boss for sponsorship) and second a Certificate in Web Design (again I couldn't pass this by my boss for sponsorship either, although I did try).
Some other training I was lucky to get over the years as part of my job where i have a certificate includes:
Rockwell Automation - Control Logix Programming - Accelerated. This was a week long course where I leant to use Rockwell PLC’s and program them in classroom environment.
WonderWare InTouch - This was a two week course where again I was trained in a classroom environment in facility in Livingstone. Excellent product and one of my favourite for creating quick and robust SCADA applications.
ICONICS Genesis 32 and 64 - Separated by a few years I have had formal training in the development of both Genesis 32 and more recently Genesis 64 SCADA products.
Introduction to Functional Safety understanding and applying IEC-61508…
So to the Careers Lady in Fortrose Academy back in 80’s who suggested I would not be able to get into University and suggesting that I may be able to squeeze in the back door of a college. Not cool but thank you, your pessimism probably helped push me to achieve more.
Robbie Williams sums up similar career advice here, I may not be on stage and screen but hey Careers Lady I've been to University and more...