The Tour of Awesome

10592747_1072473552770900_4643140571400896381_nWhat an amazing and awesome year. 25,000 miles, 29 cities, and 13 new states. I was able to visit the Football Hall of Fame, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Basketball Hall of Fame, Wrigley Field, Statue of Liberty, Empire State Building, Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial, Jefferson Memorial, Smithsonian, NASA Science Center, Las Vegas, Kentucky Bourbon Tour, Louisville Slugger, and so much more.

2015 Hour of Code

hourofcodeToday, Code.org unveiled a Star Wars-themed computer science tutorial featuring Princess Leia, C-3PO and R2-D2 as well as Rey and BB-8 from the upcoming film Star Wars: The Force Awakens. The online lesson kicks off the third-annual global Hour of Code campaign, in honor of Computer Science Education Week, December 7-13, 2015.

Thanks to Disney and Star Wars, students will learn to write code that allows them to create fun challenges and games using Star Wars characters. Participants will join forces with Rey to guide BB-8 through a space mission, then team up with Princess Leia to build their own game featuring R2-D2 or C-3PO. Students will also be able to play their completed games on smartphones, and share them with friends and family through a unique link.

Microsoft Devices Event

one-slide-to-summarize-microsoft-device-announcements-october-2015-1-638In the cloud first, mobile first world of Microsoft they have really entered the device market today at the Microsoft Devices Event where they introduced an entire line of upcoming products. You can watch the event here.

They products that were unveiled were the new Surface Pro 4, a new Surface Book, and three new Windows 10 phones: the Lumia 950, Lumia 950 XL and Lumia 550. To be honest I have my eye on the Lumina 950XL. Other new products showcased during today’s event included the Microsoft Band 2 fitness wearable and the HoloLens holographic computing device; Microsoft also announced a Windows 10 update for its Xbox One game console coming in November.

MCT Summit

1mctPartyWhat another great week getting together with my fellow MCTs. The first three days were spent picking up presentations tips and tricks. There were also many sessions covering a variety of technical skills (Including of course my two sessions on SQL Server coding.) The last two days was for the Regional Lead Summit which also had a great turn out. I am so excited about the upcoming year for not only the MCT community, but also everything that will be occurring for the Microsoft Certification Program. If you missed it or just want to see a group of highly dedicated professionals here is the MCT Summit in Pictures.

SQL Saturday – Louisville

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This is my Working with Data Types presentation for the SQL Saturday – Louisville on August 22nd, 2015. Some helpful links.

Instructor of the Year 2015

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It was truly an honor to be select as one of the Top 25 New Horizons Technical Instructors of the Year. Obviously, I did not earn this by myself. Thank you to the great crew at New Horizons of Indianapolis who make sure everything runs smoothly. That may be the reason that New Horizons Indianapolis was named Top 3 Large Market Center of the Year. Of course it also helps that all THREE Technical Instructors and one of our Applications Instructors made the Top 25 list.

North America MCT Summit

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Why are all these MCTs so happy? They know that registration for the North American MCT Summit 2015 is Live! Register Now! to reserve your space. Early-bird pricing has been extended to August 15th.

MCT events are your best opportunity to interact with your peers. Come learn a new technical skill, how to teach a specific course or technology, or how to become a better trainer. Please join us Monday – Wednesday 28-30 September in Bellevue, WA for the fifth annual community-driven North America MCT summit. This year’s summit is a collaborative effort between the summit planning team and Microsoft Learning (LeX).

The theme of this year’s event is “More”: We have more of everything planned:  More sessions, more interaction with LeX team members, more social events, and more surprises. Tell your bosses, find the time. This is a great opportunity to learn about the future of the MCT program, express your opinions (and offer constructive suggestions) to the LeX team members. This is your community. Come be a part of it!

Return of Second Shot

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Second Shot is back! Are you thinking of starting on the road to MCP certification? Or interested in continuing or upgrading your certification path? Now is a great time to take your next step.

Second Shot provides you with a free retake on your exam should you need it – at no additional cost to you. To qualify as free, the retake must be the same exam as the one you didn’t pass. Plus, either exam can be taken in a testing center or through Online Proctoring (OP), offering you greater exam taking flexibility.

Mobility Transformed Events

WindowsMobileDid you miss Ignite? We are hitting the road and heading to 11 cities across the US. Come join members of the Microsoft product team for interactive discussions & demos at our Mobility Transformed: The Path to Windows 10 event series. Be one of the first to learn tips and tricks for Windows 10, Office 365, and more to ensure you are on the leading edge of devices and services. Register today for our IT Pro Event: http://aka.ms/mobilitytransformed

January Speaker for IndyPASS

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It has been confirmed that I will be the Guest Speaker for the IndyPASS meeting on January 20th, 2015. The topic of the night will be on How to obtain Microsoft SQL Certification. I will be starting with discussing the certification paths and the electives availabe for both the Database Platform and Business Intelligence Certifications. Followed up by a quick outline of the each of the exams.

Agenda:

5:30 – Professional Networking & Food
6:00 – Announcements
6:15 – Featured Presentation
7:15 – Prize Drawings

Location: Apparatus HQ
1401 North Meridian St.
Indianapolis, IN 46202

Catching Fire

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Just finished registering for Microsoft Ignite. In case you didn’t hear, Microsoft has combined multiple events including TechEd into one big event. Five days of all the best speakers on the future of Microsoft products. In addition, we will be holding the annual MCT Day on May 2nd. Several of us MCT Regional Leads from the Midwest have already started organizing this year’s event and we have some great ideas to build on last years amazing turn out. (Yes, I know we are technically still in this year on the calendar.)

I can’t tell you how excited I am to again attend such great events. Especially when they are just a three hour drive from my house.