Jorge Barrera

Network Consultant Engineer at Cisco Systems, Inc.

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I love being around people who are passionate about the industry and I would like to be able to make a difference in someone else’s life.

In a world of ever-changing technology, becoming a computer expert is no easy task. One must always keep up with the latest processes and systems in order to bring the necessary knowledge to tech work, which is a task that Robert Morris University alumnus, Jorge Barrera, has mastered. Barrera attended the Orland Park campus, where he completed his AAS in Computer Networking in 1999 and his Bachelor’s degree in Computer Networking in 2009.  He went on to complete his Master of Science in Information Systems degree at Northwestern University. Currently, Barrera works as a Network Consultant Engineer at Cisco Systems, Inc. where he provides consulting services for enterprise and service-provider customers in the phases of design, implementation, and optimization of large-scale networks.

Barrera’s journey towards a successful career in computer networking began at RMU, where the challenging classes paired with certification opportunities allowed him to gain valuable skills. The Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) program at RMU opened many doors for Barrera. The CCNA prepares students to become network engineers by expanding foundational network knowledge. “When I first went to RMU, I was a general tech…Little by little, I started taking on new opportunities and learning as much as I could. I was able to learn new things at RMU, which opened many doors towards bettering my career,” reflects Barrera.

In order to be a successful network engineer, it is necessary to complete numerous certifications. Through the completion of his studies at RMU, Barrera has gained various certifications, including CCIE R&S-Voice, CCNP Voice, CCVP, and VMware VCP. He is also a Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE), Checkpoint Certified Systems Engineer (CCSA/CCSE), Compaq/HP Accredited Systems Engineer (ASE), and Convergence Technology Professional (CTP). Barrera views the completion of dual Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert (CCIE) certifications as his greatest professional accomplishment, as only 3,000 people worldwide have achieved this task.

In the near future, Barrera plans on continuing his work at Cisco Systems, Inc., where he has been working for the past four years. He also plans on sharing his knowledge to others through teaching, “I am very interested in the educational experience. I love being around people who are passionate about the industry and I would like to be able to make a difference in someone else’s life.”

Outside of his work as a network consultant engineer, Barrera is very active in the local community. This winter, he will be a volunteer at the Second Harvest Food Bank, accepting donations and organizing food packages to those in need. Barrera is also an active mentor to those within his community interested in his field and career path. As a way of giving back to his educational institutions, Barrera has been both a guest speaker in RMU networking classes and a Teaching Assistant for online networking courses at Northwestern University.

Jorge Barrera has made a successful career through his passion for computer networking and mastering certifications necessary in the industry. Even though the job may sometimes be stressful and demanding, Barrera is constantly determined to be the best at what he does and continues learning about his industry every day. Advising students pursuing a career in computer networking, he states, “Fall in love with your profession because there is no end. Passing a class does not mean you are done. Be ready to move on to the next level. You are always changing, growing, and learning. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Read the small print. Know your knowledge and capabilities.”