My previous VCP 4 and 5 training has been carried out via the Academy route and rarely differed from the usual VATC provided training, the only difference between the Academy and VATC’s in the past was that the Academy could offer weekend training dates and also lasted 8 days instead of the usual 5 days.
In previous times training with an Academy still meant that you had to sign up for the class on the MyLearn VMware site, had to attend all the lessons and be signed off the class by the instructor, you also received a heavily discounted voucher for the VCP exam and a reasonable time to sit that exam. Again training with a VATC only provided the course attendance and no discounted VCP voucher. This time around I discovered that there has been a change to the way that the course attendance is marked and also an additional benefit that all students should use to aid in their study and understanding of the technology.
Instead of signing in for the class on the MyLearn VMware site now the course attendance is monitored and maintained by the instructor, at the end of the course an email is sent to each student with details
That’s right, as a graduate of the Academy you are also given access to the above software for personal use, the software comes with a 1 year license to enable you to have hands on experience with the various technologies because not everyone has the luxury of working with Enterprise Plus editions of vSphere, this was a really great move by VMware and certainly different from when I did my vSphere 5 ICM course via the Academy route a couple of years ago.
I recently had the opportunity to attend my vSphere 6 ICM course with 360GSP, this was I believe their first foray in to vSphere 6 training but their instructor was someone I have had the pleasure of having been instructed by before and certainly knows his stuff.
Set over 4 weekends the training was carried out at 360GSP’s facility in Wembley, not exactly around the corner for me but worth the journey to do.
The class was a mix of experienced virtualisation engineers and junior engineers getting their first step on the ladder that is virtualisation, the number of students was comfortable as there was plenty of infrastructure around to handle all the students and one of the best things about the Academy provided learning material compared to recent courses was the availability of physical books, something I thought VMware had done away with a couple of years ago (I love technology but do actually prefer physical training books rather than online editions).
The only thing I would suggest as far as improvement was concerned would be the storage back end as that tended to choke a little when being targeted by 14 students all trying to vMotion VMs across data stores, however I do know it’s something the instructor is looking at for the future (the price of dedicated storage devices these days are so much cheaper than 5 years ago).
I want to give a big thank you to Angel and Sher (as well as Chet) from 360GSP for their continued work at making training easy, their weekend approach to training can make life so much easier for people and they maintain a staffed office 7 days a week with someone on hand to answer any admin type questions. I would also like to say a big thank you to Dai Tanabe my instructor again, his dedication to the job is second to none and his ability to instruct 14 students of various skills is top notch, it’s easy to see why people like coming on courses with Dai as the instructor.