February 23, 2009

Microsoft Offers Elevate America Initiative

On Sunday, Microsoft announced a new venture to expand information technology education and training with businesses and community-based partners.

The Elevate America initiative is expected to "provide up to 2 million people over the next three years with the technology training needed to succeed in the 21st-century economy," Microsoft said.

"Millions of individuals don't have the technology skills needed in today's economy. Through Elevate America, we want to help workers get the skills they need to succeed," Pamela Passman, Microsoft's VP for corporate affairs, said in a statement.

Microsoft unveiled the new Web site on Sunday aimed at helping people "understand what types of technical skills they need for the jobs and entrepreneurial opportunities of today and tomorrow, and resources to help acquire these skills," the company said in a statement.

Microsoft also said it plans to partner with state and local governments to provide a broader range of training programs and certification exams. Microsoft is providing 1 million Microsoft Learning vouchers for free access to Microsoft eLearning courses and select certification exams, according to the company statement.

"Elevate America is a great example of Microsoft's leadership on education and work force development "” issues that bring us a step closer to recovery by helping us provide critically important help to our citizens. Washington state is pleased to be one of the first states to partner with Microsoft to provide Elevate America to our residents," said Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire.

Florida Gov. Charlie Crist acknowledged the success of Elevate Miami after seven years at work with Microsoft.

"Now, with Elevate America, we have the opportunity to bring these important skills to even more people, at a time when they are needed more than ever," said Crist.


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