I am becoming certified with Net +, CCNA, CCNP and SCNP. Is this a good start? Where would you recommend I start for employment? I'm also working on a Master's in IT.
This is a great start, but without relevant job experience in security, you might want to consider getting your hands dirty as a network administrator for a year or two to learn more about operational aspects of the job and how security figures into day-to-day networking activities.
If your working on your Master's right now, you might also want to focus your studies on security topics as well (and your thesis as well, if your degree plan requires one). This combination should make you pretty attractive to employers, at which point you'll be able to get help finding a job from placement professionals as well as through your own efforts. Good luck!
For more information on this topic, visit these other SearchSecurity.com resources:
Ask the Expert: Experience vs. certification in today's job market
Ask the Expert: The advantages of work-related security experience
Ask the Expert: The Catch-22 of infosec employment
This was first published in September 2002