A little background:
I got my CWNA in December of 2020 then my CWDP in October of 2021. I knew that the CWAP was going to be a hard one to wrap my head around, so I started looking around for CWAP courses I could potentially take to help bolster my understanding of the material.
While shopping around for companies that offered CWAP classes, I bought the CWAP study guide and began reading through it. When I hit the chapter on A-MSDU and A-MPDUs, I had to re-read it 3 times just to start to feel like I wasn’t 100% lost. That’s when I started looking online for help. I jumped over to Rasika Nayanajith’s (@mrncciew) blog, which my coworkers and I had previously studied to better understand multicast. I was looking to see if he had anything relating to the CWAP course. And BAM! I found an entire section dedicated to his CWAP notes and explanations. Obviously, I started reading those to fill some gaps I felt I had after just a few chapters into my CWAP studies.
I continued to shop around, sending emails to a few places asking them for pricing and some more info on their courses. One of which was wifitraining.com. I ended up having some email correspondence with Chris Avants (@RockstarWifi), the Principal Instructor for the site. He got me more info about the course and a quote to take the three-day instructor led online course. The quote was paid and I was officially signed up for the CWAP class from wifitraining.com
My CWAP class…
The weekend before my class, I got an email from my instructor at wifitraining, introducing himself and giving me the WebEx link to the class. But something about my instructor’s name rang a bell…
I threw his name into google and my heart dropped…he’s @mrncciew! WHAT?! I’m going to be taught by the guy who writes all the awesome blogs my coworkers and I read ALL THE TIME to learn things we aren’t sure about! Holy crap, I am EXCITED.
Class day rolls around, it starts at 5am AKST, which isn’t super awesome, but I didn’t care. My expectations are to just keep my webcam off, stay on mute unless being talked to, and take as many notes as I possibly can. Hoping to retain even a fraction of Rasika’s knowledge. I join the WebEx a few minutes early and make sure my coffee cup is full. I’m the first person waiting in the lobby. Rasika joins, and so far it’s just the two of us. His camera is on, he’s doing things, I’m sitting here waiting for others to join, trying not to be starstruck. After a few more minutes, Rasika starts talking…..TO ME. He asks me how I am, what I do, what my goals are, what vendors I’m familiar with, etc. We chit-chat for about 10 minutes, then I look over and realize I’m STILL the only other person in this WebEx meeting. I jokingly ask Rasika, “Am I the only person in this class or something?” and he replies, “Yes, you are.”
No, no way. This has gotta be some kind of a sick joke from Rasika. There’s no freaking way they’d keep a class open for just one person, much less a class taught by someone that is so respected and in high demand. He assured me that they do not cancel classes unless it’s absolutely necessary and that the next three days of CWAP training are going to be just the two of us.
But seriously, this is surreal. I’m crazy scared/excited that I lucked out this hard. The pressure is on to really get as much out of this as I possibly can. I immediately shoot a screenshot to my coworker in excitement:
I’m not going to go into a lot of detail about the CWAP course subject matter, I’m still in the process of consolidating all my notes from the class, doing labs from the workbook, and finishing reading through the CWAP book myself. I’ll be making more posts about individual things from it in the future. But those three days of one-on-one lessons from Rasika absolutely FLEW by.
We also ended up going over the requirements for the CWNE application. I’m actually starting this blog because he re-ignited that spark of my love for learning. By the time I finish the CWAP, CWSP, and CWISA, this blog will be my way of not only fulfilling the publication requirements for the CWNE application, but hopefully I can provide others in the wifi community with helpful, relatable information to help them along their journeys as well.
I never dreamed that just signing up for the CWAP course would have such a major impact on me. This was the greatest thing that has ever happened to my professional career. Having 1-on-1 time with Rasika was beyond anything I could have imagined for this course. He is an amazing instructor and very focused on really helping teach the deep concepts that I needed to be able to pass this course on my own, not just showing me what I needed to know to be able to pass a certification. His depth of knowledge, willingness to tailor his class to just me, humility, and awesome attitude towards learning was incredibly inspiring. I can only hope that someday I can be even half as inspiring to others.
Thank you, Rasika.