MCC Computer Network Instructor Among World’s Top 25 Percent

Mark Verhoeven with computer students

MCC faculty member Mark Verhoeven works with students in the CISCO networking lab on campus.

For the fifth time in eight years, MCC faculty member Mark Verhoeven has been recognized by the CISCO Networking Academy as an Advanced Level Instructor, a select annual honor reserved for the top 25 percent of its 26,500 instructors worldwide based upon student feedback and performance.

Verhoeven, who has been teaching CISCO Networking Academy courses for 14 years, is one of the state’s two honorees in 2019 and the only one in West Michigan.

Globally, more than two million students are enrolled in CISCO Networking Academy courses at 12,100 academies in 180 countries. In 2018, MCC added the CISCO courses as part of the new Computer Networking CISCO certificate program.

“What my award means is that Muskegon Community College students are getting high quality instruction from an expert level instructor,” explained Verhoeven. “I work hard to make sure my students excel.”

His consistent Advanced Level Instructor status reflects that commitment, as the criteria include student performance, student feedback and his continued professional development.

Verhoeven remains a strong advocate for the power of the Cisco Networking Certificate.

“This really is an awesome program that takes students from no skills to highly employable skills in only one year,” he said. “It’s probably one of the best entry level IT networking certifications out there.”

The hands-on, 27-credit hour instruction prepares students for taking the CISCO Certified Network Associate (CCNA) exam. The CCNA test covers a broad range of fundamentals for IT careers, based on the latest networking technologies and job roles. The CCNA is a foundational certification for those seeking a high-level networking profession, as well as one of the most highly sought-after certifications in the industry as a whole.

“The CCNA is the golden ticket to an IT job,” says Verhoeven. “If you put that on your resume, it’s going to get you the interview, just like that.”

The CISCO Networking Labs, located in MCC’s Stevenson Center, are segmented off the college’s computer network which allows students to gain valuable experience while working with virtual machines.

“Everything we do is hands-on learning,” continues Verhoeven. “I am not just going to sit there and lecture for three hours because the students are not going to learn how to do things in the real world if they don’t do them in the classroom.

MCC has articulation agreements with both Muskegon Career Tech Center and the Newaygo Area Career Tech Center, where students take the first two CISCO classes, to allow them to complete CISCO 3 and CISCO 4 courses at the college. MCC’s Testing Center is also a Pearson VUE computer-based testing site – the only one in Muskegon County – which exclusively conduct the CCNA exams for CISCO nationwide.

For more information, contact Mark Verhoeven at (231) 777-0448 or at