Perseverance Wins the Race

Mikhail Gnedoy, graduate of the Cisco Academy of Borderless Possibilities, recently finished fourth in the Cisco NetRiders national competition in the Russian Federation. Mikhail, who also earned his Cisco CCNA Security certification, was quickly hired by the SkillFactory online training center for information technologies. Mikhail has earned the Cisco CCNA Security certification, and is striving for further IT achievements.

"I always pictured myself as a modern-day IT professional,” says Mikhail. “Not the bearded, sweatshirt wearing sys-admin character that is always joked about, but a highly qualified suit-and-tie specialist who solves problems in the blink of an eye. That's what I'm going for."

Seizing Opportunities

Due to his health impediments, all of Mikhail's interests revolve around the computer. His first networking accomplishment was server configuration for an online shooter, that is how he got his first experience in *NIX administration.

“Everyone faces issues and obstacles but you need to be persistent to overcome them and to continuously move forward. And you will definitely produce results.” -Mikhail Gnedoy

By chance, Mikhail learned about an opportunity to study at a Cisco Academy. "One morning, a phone call woke me up. My friend was rambling on enthusiastically and I heard three words: ‘Cisco, courses, free.’ I knew Cisco specialists were rare and worth their weight in gold, so I collected the necessary documents and enrolled the same day."

Perseverance as Motivation

Because it was distance learning, motivation became the main challenge for Mikhail. Fortunately, perseverance is one of his best characteristics.

"During his training, Mikhail was diligent in completing lab work, taking tests, and conducting himself like a knowledgeable technical specialist," says Konstantin Kriazhenkov, his instructor at academy. "His questions displayed that he was eager to master the material in depth." 

"Completing the CCNA course took me almost a year," Mikhail recalls. "Our group had an online community where we discussed our lab work. A lot of great guys participated in our project, and we still keep in touch."

Cisco NetRiders Competition

Mikhail learned about the opportunity to compete in the Cisco NetRiders competition while preparing for his CCNA certification exam. He thought a contest would be a great way to demonstrate his knowledge. "In the practical section, I came across a real challenge, setting up an email client on a tablet. I couldn't do it at first, despite having previously configured email programs on mobile phones. This task required a lot of perseverance."

The NetRiders competition in Russia was attended by more than 100 contestants, so taking fourth place was a real victory for Mikhail.

Soon afterwards, his talents and knowledge led to an opportunity at the SkillFactory online training center. He was offered a job as a tutor to assist students during online courses.

Advice for NetAcad Students

When asked what advice he would give to NetAcad students, Mikhail shared his invaluable insights. “I would like to request all students, especially those at the Academy of Borderless Possibilities, not to give up. Don't give up after your first, second, or even after the third failure. Everyone faces obstacles but you need to be persistent to overcome them and to continuously move forward. You will definitely produce results. Even if it's not exactly what you initially planned, it will be your result.”


Cisco Academy of Borderless Possibilities

Read more about how the Cisco Academy of Borderless Possibilities trains individuals with disabilities to work in the field of networking technologies.  They provide free certification courses for those wanting to complete their CCNA and CCENT certifications. For more details, please visit