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Jonas Singbo
Jonas Singbo

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3x AWS Certified: Scoring a hat-trick

Up until a year ago, my entire knowledge of AWS could have been summarized into one sentence "it is one of Jeff Bezos money trees".

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I am Jonas Singbo, full stack engineer at Yoyo Wallet, Cape Town, South Africa and my love languages are (Java) (1 + Script).

Welcome to my ted talk.


  • I was tasked with developing a gateway solution that sits between a front-end app and a number of api/backend services.
    Language: Java, ok 😎💪🏾
    Compute Platform: AWS Lambda, what ? what's that. 👀🤷🏾

  • A colleague at work made me fall in love with the role of solution architect with his ability to design architectures for our solutions and provide strategic guidance during the development process.

Immediately I knew I wanted to become one when I grow up.😊

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Working on the gateway service piqued my interest in AWS. Further research into AWS services blew my mind and I decided to get certified.

Cloud computing has grown into a complex universe and AWS is leading it with up to 175 products and services by 2020.

As of October 2020, Canalys reports that the worldwide cloud market grew 33% this quarter to $36.5 billion. AWS has 32% of the market and generated more revenue than the next three largest combined, Azure is at 19% of the market, Google Cloud at 7%, Alibaba Cloud close behind at 6%, and other clouds with 37%. Jay Chapel

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I decided to ditch the foundation level cloud practitioner cert, kick off my journey at the associate level and get myself all associate certs for my birthday instead of a tesla (😂 I am literally laughing in USD right now and you won't understand why).

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AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate (SAA-C02)

It requires you to have a comprehensive understanding of AWS services and technologies as well as the ability to build secure and robust solutions using architectural design principles based on customer requirements.

An associate solution architect is expected to deploy hybrid systems (comprised of on-premises data center and AWS services), strategically design well-architected distributed systems that are scalable, resilient, efficient, and fault-tolerant.

AWS Certified SysOps Administrator – Associate

You have a comprehensive understanding on how to deploy, manage, and operate IT systems on the AWS Cloud. You are able to migrate on-premises workloads to AWS and monitor, scale, and secure systems on the AWS platform.

Moreover, you should be in a position to provide guidance on implementing best practices for cloud operations. Passing this exam requires both technical expertise and conceptual knowledge of the operational aspects of the AWS platform.

AWS Certified Developer – Associate

Here it is all about demonstrating proficiency in writing applications with AWS service APIs, AWS CLI, and SDKs; using containers; and deploying with a CI/CD pipeline.

You are expected to have a comprehensive understanding of application life-cycle management. A developer is able to develop, deploy, and debug cloud-based applications that follow AWS best practices.

At the associate-level exams the passing score is 720/1000 and my scores were:

  • Solution Architect: 861
  • SysOps Administrator: 914
  • Developer: 947

Materials used

Solution Architect

SysOps Administrator


For my practice exams, I use a bit of Whizlabs but I heavily practiced with Jon Bonso's Tutorials Dojo Tests, highly recommended resource.

Future plans

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Besides diving into popular devOps tools such as docker, jenkins, terraform, ansible and kubernetes, I have decided to pursue the *AWS Solution Architect Professional *certification.

The AWS Certified Solution Architect Professional, one of the most challenging and well-respected certifications in IT, requires multi-dimensional mastery of cloud architecture.

It requires an extensive understanding of designing technical strategies to accomplish specific business goals.

A professional solution architect has the ability to balance best practices and trade-offs based on business context as well as designing solutions across multiple platforms and cloud providers.

After days of research, I have enrolled in Adrian Cantrill's AWS Certified Solutions Architect - Professional course which is hands down the best AWS course I have ever enrolled myself in. His associate level courses also seems to be the bomb.

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Additionally, I have always wanted to write and publish technical articles and I guess now is a good time and place to start. I intend to architect, design simple to complex real world solutions and code them when necessary.

Who knows maybe I get to sell one of those one day and get myself a Tesla, a second hand private jet or rent an island. Anyways we will see.


I recommend reading this awesome article written by Liz Percak Dennett, a Solution architect at AWS on Slay imposter syndrome while prepping for AWS Certification exams


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Oh I am on Linkedin Jonas Singbo. Let's connect.

Top comments (8)

paullyfire profile image
Paul Patterson

What. a. legend :)

jnax09 profile image
Jonas Singbo

Haha 😊 Thank you Paul

rkouye profile image
rkouye • Edited

What a fun read, really insightful also. Good job Jonas!

jnax09 profile image
Jonas Singbo

Thank you Romaric. Glad you enjoyed it.

softholyic profile image
Nhlalala Shiburi

Feeling inspired, well done.

jnax09 profile image
Jonas Singbo

Thank you Nhlalala

fredrikoller profile image
Fredrik Öller

Great job, congratulations! I'm aiming to get two aws certificates this year, but who knows, might score a hat trick as well ;)

jnax09 profile image
Jonas Singbo

Thank you Fredrik.
Go for it. Hat trick mode activated. 😎
All the best.!