Welcome AHEA Members

Thank you for visiting our website. It’s been a privilege assisting members of AHEA in their pursuit of technical skills over these past few years.

To register for our AHEA give-a-way (1 free Computer Essentials registration), please leave a comment below, answering the following question, “Why are technical skills important for success in life?”

We will draw a winner on July 31st and contact you via email. We will also verify your AHEA membership at that time.

Please let us know if you have any questions.



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Cute Apple Joke

I was talking to one of the younger members of the current Computer Essentials course and he asked, “Mr. Nathan, do you want to hear a joke I made up?”

I of course agreed.

“What kind of viruses do Mac’s get?” he asked.

I, of course, started thinking of the differences between a virus and a worm, whether the malware is focused on the OS or an application… ahhh, but this was a joke.

“No idea” I said.

His response, “A worm, worm’s eat Apples.”


That’s one neat thing about Computer Essentials, we see a significant variety of ages go through and enjoy it. Certainly, those in the 10-13 year age range likely have their parents involved with them to assist. But, it’s great to see it resonate with such a large demographic.

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Samaritan Ministry Drawing Winners

We are pleased to announce that Debbie S and BJG are the winners of a free Computer Essentials course. I have emailed both to confirm Samaritan’s membership.

Thank you to each participant. If I don’t heard back from either, we’ll draw again and update this post.

In Christ,

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Welcome Samaritan’s Members

Welcome Samaritan Ministries newsletter readers! We appreciate your interest in ITonRamp and our courses. Feel free to look around and use the Contact link above to let us know if you have any questions.

DSC_0418We’re excited to offer a very special giveaway to Samaritan members: two complimentary seats in our Computer Essentials course ($200 value). CE is a five week track, and winner will be randomly picked for the April 21st-May 23rd and one June 2nd-July 4th courses. CE is a great “learn about your computer” course for high school students all the way up to parents. Did you know with our ITonRamp courses, you can have one person in your family signed up, but everyone in the family can benefit by watching the webinar and studying the materials? The paying student (or, if you win a free one), will be the only one interacting with the ITonRamp mentor, turning in answers, and taking tests, but the rest can learn so much! Also, if the webinar happens to fall at an inconvenient time for you, no problem. You can watch the recorded webinar anytime throughout the week.

To qualify for the giveaway, you need to be a member of Samaritan Ministries and use the comment box below to answer this question:

Why would you like to learn computer skills from a Christian mentor?”

The giveaway will close February 28th. 2014. At that point, all the entries will be fed into a pool, and our software will randomly pick two winners. You will be notified by March 4th if you won and posted here.DSC_0430

Please know that we are not harvesting e-mail addresses from respondents, and therefore you will not be added to our mailing list. However, if you want to join our list you can use the form located on our front page.

In Christ,



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Small Business Accounting After Action Report

I asked Christopher for an after-action on the Small Business Accounting course he led last year. Below are his comments.



My goal with this course was that every student would come away with a functional and well-rounded knowledge of QuickBooks Pro – and the course was a resounding success. Whether the student had never used QuickBooks before (several), was regularly using it with their family business (quite a few), were teenagers (about half), were parents (the other half), or were a CPA (yes, even a CPA was a part of the course) – I wanted each one to be challenged.

In addition to the weekly 1.5 hour webinars, a key component was the hands-on exercises. While each student created multiple company files in QuickBooks during the course, one company (a piano tuning and service company) was not only created, but was populated with real transactions: customers, vendors, invoices, bill payments, inventory, checks, credit card transactions, accounts, and even bank reconciles. I put together the hands-on transactions based upon what we would be covering each week, in addition to some of the little tips and tricks I’ve learned in helping various companies use QuickBooks for their finances over the years. Problem transactions that would have to be properly troubleshot and corrected were also included: mistakes happen in real life and knowing how to properly fix them is an important part of bookkeeping.

It was very rewarding to me as I heard how they were able to apply the various items we were covering in the course, in their businesses. One student, who had never used QuickBooks prior to the course, is an entrepreneur who was in the process of launching his business during the QuickBooks course. As he was going through the process to create a company file for his new business, his comment was, “Oh, this is easy — I’ve done this before”.

If you use QuickBooks and aren’t familiar enough to be able to say that yourself: don’t worry, we have another course scheduled for the summer of 2014. Or, If you’ve never used QuickBooks: it would be a great skill to pick up as a summer course so that you’ll be equipped should you ever find yourself starting, or helping, to run a business.

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A+ Grads

As a followup to my last post, I wanted to share just a couple of pictures of two A+ grads. They were gracious enough to send me shots of them holding their certificates.

The certificate and credential comes from CompTia, an international organization based in Chicago. Their tests are frequently updated to reflect changes in technology. For example, when I started taking A+ exams there was no mention of virtualization. Now, you’d be hard pressed to pass the exams without a reasonable comfort level with the concepts associated with it.

Way to go!

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A+ Course Coming Up

I am excited about the A+ course starting in March. This is probably the most challenging course offered and also the most rewarding for students. There is an amazing amount of material covered, required knowledge taken out, and practical skills gained.

Here are some snippets of an email I received from a 2013 student who put his skills to great use:

I am sending you this e-mail to tell you about what I have been able to use what I learning in A+ for.  My family and I just returned last week from a ten day trip to “foreign country.” Our family runs a ministry that works with a children’s home there so this was my third trip.  One of my projects that I had been asked to do while I was there was to work of the computers that they had. Being able to do this was the main reason for my taking A+. I had a great time working on these computers and had some interesting issues…..

….Fortunately, in A+ I really enjoyed making live cds, (I made 5), and one of them was an AVG antivirus cd.   I booted from that cd and ran a full system scan. When the results came back the problem was worse than I had thought.  I had a list of 444 viruses and trojans on that computer….

….The hard drive out of one of the laptops was damaged and was not salvageable, though I was able to connect it to a desktop and boot to a Knoppix cd to salvage the data. The other laptop’s hard drive was still fully functioning, So I transferred it to another laptop and the bookkeeper was able to keep using it…..

As an instructor, it’s very exciting to see students not only passing tests, but making use of what they’ve learned. That’s one reason I’m so excited about the A+ credential. It is very, very practical.

I’ve taken alot of tests since I entered this career field. While you will always benefit from learning, there are things you study that make you think, “Will I ever really use this?” I remember having that thought while studying Active Directory partition management; I’ve not needed it yet but maybe some day.

The A+ credential is immediately applicable. We learn how to resolve problems that PCs in our home are experiencing, issues our neighbors are dealing with, and so much more. It’s real world experience.

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Back Online

After a brief hiatus, the ITonRamp blog is back online. There’s a fair bit to catch-up on. Stay tuned!

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Student Home Lab

I always enjoy seeing students take their learning to new levels. One Network+ graduate is seeking to achieve his CCNA (Certified Cisco Network Associate). To do that, a lab is often built to practice and experiment. Here is what his looks like.

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Nice A+ Note

I just received a kind note from a student who took the A+ course in the summer of 2012. He has just now taken, and passed!!, his tests. Traditionally, an extensive delay between the end of the course and taking the tests doesn’t bode well for passing. However, he did great.

Here’s a snip from his note:

I FINALLY took the tests today (I bumped it up a week), and I passed the 220-701 and 220-702 exams. So, I am now A+ certified –

Hurrah!! Thanks very much to God, and to ITonramp (namely, Mr. Maxwell). Your tutoring, and sensibilities in explaining the subject material and how to study it were invaluable for passing.

Great job Brandon!

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