What is Database Management?
When mainlanders think of Hawaii, they mostly think about exotic beaches, flower necklaces, and tropical jungles. All of that, and more, can be found in the state. However, Hawaii is home to bustling businesses that support the tourism but also the shipping, retail trades, agricultural concerns, and more. These businesses all must run on databases that demand rigorous maintenance and periodic improvements.
It may come as little surprise that one of the top industries in the state is real estate. This includes the numerous hotels, resorts, and rentals along the coasts. Each of these endeavors requires a database that can track rental fees, occupancy, and seasonal or other shifts in business. Hawaii is also, unsurprisingly, strong in shipping, wholesale trade, transportation, and shipping. All of these must have their activities tracked and accounted using database technologies.
To meet the database needs of Hawaii's business concerns, the state's public and private colleges and universities have risen to the task of educating Hawaiians to become database administration professionals. There, students can earn associate database administration degrees, bachelor’s degrees in database administration, or even master’s degrees in high technology that will enable them to revolutionize databases for their employers.
Database Management Education in Hawaii
Since Hawaii is still a rather small state, the educational options available may be too limited for some Hawaiians. To help alleviate this problem, the Western Undergraduate Exchange is available to help add to the dearth of academic options. This program allows Hawaii's star students to apply and earn the chance to attend a public college or university in a participating western state. Once admitted, students can attend a participating school and pay in-state tuition as though they lived in that state. This opens up many options in California, Washington, Colorado, and more states. However, Hawaii's database administration students may wish to stay closer to home and pursue a database administration degree online while working or otherwise living island life.
Associate Degree in Database Management (AS)
An associate database administration degree is a great way to jump-start a career in information technology. These days, there are innumerable opportunities to earn this sort of degree. Many state community college systems have multiple IT degree programs that will train you to work as a database administrator. There are also online colleges and universities that offer more options for this degree.
Upon graduation, you will be able to take your associate database administration degree to a local IT firm or department where you will start with an entry-level position. It will be helpful if you also earn non-academic certifications in database technology. For instance, a certificate that shows competency in SQL, and/or its variants, will show a hiring executive that you are serious about working in the field. Furthermore, as you gain experience in your entry-level position you should consider earning more and more credentials in the field.
Bachelor’s Degree in Database Management (BS)
Information technology careers can take off like a rocket with a full bachelor’s database administration degree from a fully accredited Hawaii college or university, or any university. During the course of the degree, be sure to learn SQL and its variants. Students should also consider working towards online certificates from sources such as Linux Academy, which offers affordable courses without the high cost of academic credits.
A bachelor’s database administration degree offers many perks, such as the ability to dive deeper into the subject than a community college might allow. Students in larger universities may choose to take elective courses in topics such as information security, data science, or computer science. Furthermore, students can also decide whether or not to pursue a minor concentration. Some options might include mathematics, computer science, or a topic in the business school. Finally, most four-year database administration degree programs should offer students the option to work on internships.
Master’s Degree in Database Management (MS or MC)
A master’s degree is nearly a requirement for many high-tech careers, and many should also consider an MBA if they desire a move into upper management and the C-suites. Students should carefully consider their long-term goals before deciding on a master’s degree program because there are so many, and each has something unique to offer. Seasoned professionals, for instance, may want a program that focuses on a specific aspect of database administration, such as database design or architecture. However, students who are finishing up their bachelor’s database administration degree may still want a master’s degree program that offers a bit more breadth.
All students should also consider an MBA because it could help them rise through the ranks of management and perhaps help them land in the C-suites. For this route, students can find an MBA program that offers database administration or information technology as concentration. On the other hand, they might look at a dual MBA program where they can complete both a master’s degree in database administration along with their MBA. Dual MBA programs typically compress two graduate degrees into a tight, three-year timetable.
PhD/Doctorate Degree in Database Management (PhD)
A doctorate in database administration may seem like a bit of overkill since most employers look for a master’s degree as the top academic credential. However, a doctorate in information technology can result in a very successful career, indeed. Since the heart of all computing is found in databases, those who have this top level of learning in the subject are sure to succeed. After all, there is still so much to discover with regards to databases, networks, security, and data science, to name a few dissertation topics.
There are also many firms who seek out PhDs for their teams. Mostly, these positions are in research, so they can be seen as an extension of academic work, but with better pay and lavish bonuses. On the other hand, many PhD candidates decide to take their own research and use it as a basis for their own start-up firm. A new approach to blockchain databases or cryptography, for instance, might attract investors and become a tremendously successful endeavor.
Become a Database Manager in Hawaii
The demand for database professionals is global, so there is sure to be a high demand for them in the Hawaiian Islands, just as there is elsewhere. First, however, it's vital to explore how to become a database administration professional in Hawaii. This is a journey that usually starts very early in life and extends through college.
While youngsters may not spend their days designing or maintaining databases for themselves or others, they might start showing a proclivity for the general information technology field. One early sign that a technology career is in the making is when a kid shows that they are interested in mathematics. They might also be very concerned with how things work in general. These are the kids who will take apart a toy to discover how it works rather than play with it. These kids are also more likely to become fascinated with their computers and want to learn to program and build things in the cyber realm.
Given the tools available these days, budding database administrators might be found designing their own video games in their off hours. Some are even known to help their friends troubleshoot problems with their computers or mobile devices. When they hit high school this penchant for electronics and technology really starts to catch fire.
Kids who are driven to succeed in technology might want to explore the high schools in their area to see if there are any STEM-focused schools. These are often charter schools that offer the sorts of resources budding database administrators need to form a strong foundation of learning. A school with a strong STEM curriculum can help students dive deeper into mathematics and even programming.
From there, these tech-minded students should look for an accredited college that offers a database administration degree program. This can be at the associate or bachelor’s level. An associate database degree is sure to be cheaper on a per-credit basis than a four-year institution. However, a bachelor’s degree may be more in-depth and provide a springboard to internships, better jobs, and graduate school.
Essentially, to become a database administration professional, students should cultivate their proclivity for technology, programming, and even hardware systems. To that interest they need to add top, accredited college degrees, including graduate school.
Careers for Database Management Graduates
- Administrative / Office Manager:
This position very often involves working with a database, so a degree in database administration will come in handy. In smaller offices, their office manager may need to oversee the permissions each employee can enjoy with regards to the database. Those administrative professionals who expand their learning with a database administration degree can move their work to a higher level. However, workers at this level must also be attentive to their day-to-day administrative tasks.
- Payroll Administrator:
Payroll records are a very sensitive part of any database, and payroll administrators should be well versed at making the right calls to the database as well as entering data correctly. To properly control a payroll database, administrators may need to link the individual accounts to a bank for the purposes of electronic payroll payments.
- Information Technology Manager:
With a few years of experience working as a database administrator, IT professionals might move up into management. IT managers may be experienced in the technology, but they also need to be trained to carry out managerial tasks. For this reason, those in database management degree programs might choose to study management or leadership as electives or for a minor concentration. Database managers who wish to have a long career in upper management that culminates in a CIO or CTO position should consider an MBA.
- Database Administrator (DBA):
Database administrators come in many shapes and sizes. Some may focus on cryptography and cyber security, while others may focus on database design and maintenance. On a day-to-day basis, they usually are found at a computer terminal monitoring the database and possibly formulating queries to the database to help a teammate who needs to analyze the data.
- Data Analyst:
This profession is increasingly in demand. Computer scientists who have a strong mathematics background should consider this field because it is well-paid and has enormous growth potential. Analysts may work for a number of concerns including market research firms, financial institutions, hedge funds, public health agencies, and more.
- Computer and Information Systems Manager:
These professionals often sit at the intersection of business and technology. They need to understand the needs of the business as well as the technological solutions available to service it. That is, they need to know which solutions make the most sense and will result in the greatest efficiency for the firm.
- Information Security Analyst:
Cyber security is a hot topic these days. Every firm is scrambling to protect itself from random attacks from black hat hackers. Even individual computer users need to be aware, since nobody is safe from high-tech pirates who seek to separate people from their money or other assets. InfoSec analysts work to assess computer systems and their security and to determine what upgrades are needed from both the technological and personal sides.
- Chief Information Security Officer (CISO):
After many years of work in information technology, top database professionals may rise to this esteemed position. CISOs are not only whizzes when it comes to technology, but they also are known to have very sharp business minds. Thus, an MBA is frequently a required credential for this position, on top of high-tech degrees and certificates.