I have recently passed the SCJP exam and now I'm preparing for the SCWCD exam. Most of the jobs I am interested in advertise for web application developers who have experience with either WebSphere or WebLogic. My experience is with developing Servlets and JSPs on Apache Tomcat and ATG Dynamo, so I usually don't even get considered for an interview. My plan at this point is to get the two J2EE certifications offered by Sun (SCWCD and SCBCD) and then to take the tests for the IBM Certified Enterprise Developer - WebSphere Studio, V5.0 certification as well as the test for the BEA Certified Specialist: Server certification. I figure that once I have these feathers in my cap I will be able to truthfully claim that I can develop web apps using WebSphere and WebLogic. A few questions: Does the above sound like a reasonable plan, considering that I am unemployed (i.e. I have the time and motivation to study) ? How long should this take me (I assume a couple of months at the minimum) ? In regard to the WebSphere Developer certification would I be OK to save the IBM UML test (486) for last, or will I need this knowledge for the WebSphere exam (test 287) ? Since I am not working for a company which is running WebSphere or WebLogic how will I go about learning those two systems - i.e. are there lite versions for someone like me to use for development and education purposes only ?
Any feedback will be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance !