Certifications / Cisco

Meet the Trainer: Jeff Kish

by Raju Woodward
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Published on May 20, 2019

We're excited to introduce Jeff Kish as the latest addition to our roster of rock star trainers. Jeff brings a wealth of networking expertise to CBT Nuggets, especially within the Cisco realm. He's currently working on UCS networking training, some of which has been released.

We recently reached out to him for a quick Q&A session so you could get to know Jeff better.

Q: What are your hobbies and passions when you aren't creating videos? I first and foremost get to enjoy being a husband and dad, and I stay active in my church and community.  Beyond that, I find myself spending time on one of my hobbies – writing fantasy novels, coding video games, and occasionally sneaking off to a Super Smash Bros tournament.

Q: What do you enjoy about living in Indiana? I love Midwestern life and not living in a big city, plus it doesn't hurt to live near South Bend when you're a fan of Notre Dame football.  Go Irish!

Q: What are your areas of IT expertise? Primarily, I've worked on core networks and data centers — specifically around network fabrics, servers, storage, and disaster recovery.  More recently I've enjoyed diving into network programmability and software-defined networking. Life is never dull in the world of technology!

Q: What IT certifications do you hold? I've passionately pursued certifications since I started in the industry, obtaining my CCNA within a year of starting my first job.  Today I have a number of Cisco certs, most notably CCIEs in R&S and Data Center. Here's the complete list:

Cisco CCIE Routing and Switching, Cisco CCIE Data Center, Cisco CCNP Data Center, Cisco CCNP Routing and Switching, Cisco CCDP, Cisco CCIP, Cisco CCNA Data Center, CCNA Routing and Switching, Cisco CCDA, Cisco DCUCD Specialist, Cisco DCUFD Specialist

Q: What attracted you to technology? Funny enough, I went to school for electrical engineering and happened to take a single computer networks class. We had to do Dijkstra's algorithm by hand! Yet, it was my favorite class in all of college. I decided I wanted to get a job doing that kind of work (though now I let the routers handle the advanced mathematics).

Q: What's your favorite thing about being a trainer? I love seeing others find success and obtain a deeper understanding of the world around them.  So often, we as IT folks are barely able to keep our heads above water — as we're asked to take on more than is fair. To help them lighten that load through training is what I have always loved doing.

Q: What do you like about online video training as opposed to boot camps or textbooks? We live in an amazing time period, where I have the ability to pull up my phone and learn about anything at anytime. Online learning is always accessible, always available, always there when you need it.

Don't get me wrong, I love digesting a white paper or text book on a good subject — but we often need a better return on our time than that.

Q: What is your general advice about learning IT? Keep pursuing a better understanding of technology, whether that be through certifications or simply improving your skill set. Don't ever stop learning. The goal isn't to hang a paper on the wall, but rather to deepen understanding and improve our ability to contribute to the world around us.

Q: How would you describe your teaching style? My passion comes alive when a dry erase marker is in my hand, so my style revolves around whiteboarding and demonstrating solutions. I want learners to understand more than a list of bullet points, and to attain a deeper understanding of topics. You can expect lots of drawings and demos in my videos!

Q: What's something learners should know about you? Learners should know that I am also a learner, and my understanding of technology increases every day. There is no such thing as "arriving", we are all on a journey that will last as long as we continue to stretch ourselves and be willing to learn something new. Oh also, I'm a bit of a Star Wars geek.  

Speaking of which…

Q: If you could be any fictional character, who would you be and why? Wedge Antilles, pilot of Red 2 at the Battle of Yavin and the eventual leader of Rogue Squadron.  I wouldn't want the fate of the galaxy resting on my shoulders, but being a hotshot starship pilot sounds fun!

Watch Jeff in action today!


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