New Storage Industry Certification Opportunity for IEEE-CS Student Members

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The IEEE Computer Society wishes to alert you to an exciting storage and data management certification opportunity that we can now make available to student members through a new collaboration with NetApp. Through this educational alliance, it is now possible for IEEE-CS student members to obtain the NetApp Certified Storage Associate (NCSA) certification for the special student pricing of $100. This includes preparatory course enrollment, all course materials, and the exam fees.

The NCSA certification provides students with an outstanding educational opportunity. Students can learn the basics of storage systems and technologies and get hands-on experience working with industry-leading data management software and tools. The NCSA includes a set of five web-based courses that run approximately 18-20 hours; it also includes five hours of lab work that are delivered virtually. To complete the certification, candidates will sit for a proctored exam at a local Pearson VUE testing center.

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The commercial value of the NCSA certification is $1,950. Through the IEEE-CS educational alliance with NetApp, the IEEE Computer Society is able to offer its student members the training for the certification, including a voucher to sit for the exam itself, for only a $100 registration fee.

The rapidly growing interest in Big Data, the ongoing shift to virtualized, shared-service IT infrastructures, and the growth of cloud computing services make expertise in storage and data management a foundational technology and skill that most IT organizations require.

While the emphasis of many applied CIS programs and degrees has been on networking and database administration, the unrelenting growth of unstructured data, machine-generated data, social media, video, and digitized medical and financial records—and the compliance requirements to save, secure, and back up all of this data—has moved the demand for storage-savvy graduates to the forefront of the IT industry.

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As the volume and variety of data continue to grow, students with skills and proven industry credentials in storage management will be in great demand.

  • In a study by IDC and EMC (Managing Storage: Trends, Challenges and Options, 2013-2014), IT managers identified storage growth as their biggest challenge.
  • A recent study by IDG (The 2014 IDG Enterprise Big Data study) found that "limited availability of skilled employees to analyze and manage data" was a top concern of IT managers.
  • A CompTIA study on the IT skills gap in 2012 found that data storage and backup was the #2 concern for IT departments, second only to cybersecurity.
  • Information Week, in their 2013 State of Storage Survey, found that approximately 40% of organizations were managing over 100TBs of data—while over 25% of the firms surveyed felt that insufficient staffing and staff training were their top concerns.

As the volume and variety of data continue to grow, students with skills and proven industry credentials in storage management will be in great demand.

Note: IEEE-CS members serving on the faculty of accredited institutions may also participate. Contact us for more information.



IEEE-CS registration for the NCSA certification is currently closed.

Become an IEEE-CS Student Member

To offer more information about the NCSA educational alliance, IEEE-CS and NetApp hosted a webinar with an opportunity for Q&A on May 28.

Webinar Q&A Follow-Up

NetApp Fact Sheet


"I took one of the NetApp courses for Dr. Lupo's computer architecture class, and I thought it was very interesting. Having a foundational understanding of storage systems is very useful. It would be great if we could help other students get access to these courses and tools."

Dillon Tellier
IEEE Student Branch Chair
California Polytechnic State University