Student Spotlight

Student Spotlight: Mastering Microsoft Certifications

Ryan ClintonRyan Clinton recently caught our eye as we noticed he completed three Microsoft Office Certifications, both as a class requirement and for professional development rather quickly. After seeing he had achieved two out of three exams with perfect scores, we reached out to him to learn more about his desire to get Microsoft Certified.

Hi Ryan, thank you for taking the time to chat with us today. Can you tell us which year you’re currently in at SMU?

Certainly, I’m a senior at SMU. I can’t believe I’m near the end of my academic career here.

Congrats! Tell us a bit about yourself. Where are you from, and what are your major and minor?

I’m originally from Colorado, and I’m majoring in Economics with a focus on Financial Applications. Additionally, I have a Business minor. As for my future plans, I’m setting my sights on a career in the banking industry once I graduate.

 I’m curious about your journey with Microsoft certifications. How did you first hear about the certification program, and what prompted you to pursue these certifications?

I initially learned about the certification program last year, but I decided to dive into it this year. The initial push came when I had to complete the Excel Associate certification as a requirement for one of my classes. After that, I realized the tremendous value these certifications held, and it encouraged me to pursue other Microsoft certifications in Word and PowerPoint.

How do you think these certifications will benefit you in your future career, especially in the finance industry?

These certifications will be incredibly beneficial in my future employment. The finance industry demands strong Excel skills, and having that certification is a must. But beyond that, the other certifications make me a more well-rounded employee and a more attractive job candidate. They provide an added layer of versatility and proficiency.

Do you have any thoughts or tips for other students who might be considering getting certified?

Absolutely, I’d strongly encourage other students to pursue certifications. It’s an investment in your future that can only benefit you. And here’s a tip: Microsoft’s suite of products share similar user designs and common tools. This makes it easier to transfer knowledge from one product to another, which can be a game-changer in the professional world.

Microsoft Certified Associate badgeMicrosoft Office Specialist (MOS) Certifications are available to faculty, staff, and students. If you are interested in getting certified, please visit to get started.


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Laurene Klassen

Laurene is the Director of SMU’s IT Training & Communications Team. She enjoys reading, writing, and outdoor activities with her family in her spare time.