10 Lessons Learned From 1 Year of 100 Days of Cloud

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Today, July 5, 2021, I celebrate 1 year of 100 Days of Cloud. This challenge has helped me upskill and reskill. Here are my top 10 lessons learned. May this help someone who has just started the 100 Days of Cloud challenge or is nearly the end of Day 100 and contemplating whether or not to continue the challenge.

I Can Give Anything 1 Year

When I started July 5, 2020, I had no idea that I would had accomplished so much. The phrase ‘this time next year you’ll be in a different place’ is so true with my participating in the 100 days of cloud challenge.

Take Full Advantage Of Every Available Opportunity

When I started out Microsoft had its monthly Cloud Skills Challenge. You would complete a learning path and receive a free exam voucher. This program allowed me to receive these certifications:

  • DP-900 – Azure Data Fundamentals
  • AI-900 – Azure AI Fundamentals
  • AZ-104 – Azure Administrator Associate
  • SC-900 – Microsoft Security Fundamentals
  • AI-100 – Azure AI Engineer Associate

I have two more exams outstanding.

  • AZ- 500 – Azure Security Technologies
  • SC-200 Security Operations Analyst

This program allowed me to upskill and reskill myself into a cloud administrator.

Participating Helped Me Network With People

I met so many cloud people on Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram. I have learned from them. This networking helped me land new opportunities and learn about resources that helped me pass certifications.

New Opportunities

I received my Amazon Web Services (AWS) Community Builder Program slot and Freecodecamp through 100 Days of Cloud. I stumbled upon Freecodecamp which was a Godsend. I used Andrew Brown from ExamPro Azure Fundamentals, Azure Data Fundamentals, Oracle Foundations Associate, and Azure Administrator Associate videos to pass my respective exams during this challenge. I also used his Certified Cloud Practitioner and Solutions Architect Associate videos to pass my AWS certifications.

Right now I am using his AWS SysOps Administrator course to prep to pass this exam.

Helped Me Be Flexible And Learn More Skills

This 100 Days of Cloud challenge gave me new skills that I applied towards passing my certifications and landing interviews, opportunities and jobs. I was able to amass a knowledge base and system to be able to pass other exams.

Originally, I just wanted to be multi-cloud so passing my Azure Fundamentals and Oracle Foundation Associate were enough for me. However, after coming across the Azure Data Fundamentals and seeing the Azure AI Fundamentals, I used the newly acquired skillset to find YouTube channel playlist and practice exams to pass it. When I passed my Azure Data Fundamentals and Azure AI Fundamentals, there weren’t too many practice exams available.

The same with my sitting for the SC-900 Microsoft Security Fundamentals beta exam. When I sat for it in March 2021, only Whizlabs practice exams, John Savill exam cram session and Microsoft Learn learning path existed.

 

Improve My Content Marketing Skills

I created livestreams and wrote lessons learned of every certifications I passed. I reposted them on LinkedIn and Medium. These blog posts helped so many pass their exams.

Content marketing is a brilliant way to promote yourself and create opportunities. I have used some of these lessons learned blog posts and videos onto my AWS Community Builder Program. I was accepted into this program May 15, 2021. I credit improving my content marketing skills with my being accepted into it.

Built My Time Management Skills

Before 100 Days of Cloud, it would take me months to study for certifications. However, during this past year I have passed 10 certifications. Here they are below:

  • Azure Fundamentals
  • Oracle Foundations Associate
  • Azure Data Fundamentals
  • Azure AI Fundamentals
  • Scrum Foundations Professional Certificate
  • Azure Administrator Associate
  • Microsoft Security Fundamentals
  • SAFe Scrum Master
  • Certified Scrum Product Owner
  • AI Engineer Associate

I passed my Microsoft Security Fundamentals beta exam in 10 days (starting March 15th ending March 25th). Also I received my scaled agile framework (SAFe) Scrum Master exam on May 31, 2021, it came from my interviewing about project manager job. The interviewer was combining project management and lean management. I did not know where it came from at first. However, once I found that she was talking about scaled agile, I found the resources and course to pass my exam.

Built My Endurance

OMG! There were days I truly did not feel like doing 100 Days of Cloud. Studying for certifications are hard work because you’re constantly reinventing yourself. The info for Data Fundamentals differed from Azure Fundamentals. Oracle differed from Azure.

The associate levels differed from fundamentals. I failed my first Azure Administrator take. Yes, I forgot about it but that associate level was harder than Azure Fundamentals. The same with AI-100 AI Engineer Associate vs. Azure AI Fundamentals. With the AI-900, I just remembered the vocabulary words. With the AI-100, I had to know the steps in creating a bot or computer vision. 100 Days of Cloud equipped with this endurance and I applied it towards my work and content marketing.

Built My Authority

When I started on July 5, 2020, I never viewed this challenge as a chance to bolster my profile. When I wrote all of my lessons learned, it was to help others get the resources to pass their exams. I knew how hard it was to keep your job in the middle of the pandemic. Many professionals were only one certification away from getting that life-changing job. Throughout this process, several people used my articles to pass their certifications and then I became an authority. AWS Community Builder Program kind of solidified this. I was happy that my writings and videos helped people along the way.

You can also check my blog at www.carlarjenkins.com/blog

You can subscribe to my YouTube channel at www.carlarjenkins.com/youtubechannel

Looking Forward to Participating Another Year of 100 Days of Cloud

After participating 1 whole year in 100 days of cloud, I feel that I have just hit my stride. With the AWS Community Builder Program, I feel that continuing another year would be beneficial for me. Furthermore, I also want to test out Microsoft Azure’s new yearly renewal process. One thing’s for sure: I will document every step of my journey!

 

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