Two teenage girls sitting cross-legged on a floor with laptops as if they are students.
Image: Microsoft Ireland

Microsoft Ireland adds cloud skills programme to its list of free courses

8 Oct 2021

The new course is part of the company’s Pathways for Life education scheme and was added due to the demand for skilled cloud tech workers.

Microsoft Ireland is launching a new free skills programme to provide learners with a cloud certification.

The Skill Forward programme is part of Microsoft’s existing Pathways for Life scheme, which consists of a range of educational and training initiatives that have been developed for people of all ages and experience levels to help them to progress in STEM careers.

The new course will be delivered in 11 separate webinars that will run throughout October and November. The webinars will each focus on an area of cloud computing such as security, data, Microsoft Azure, Azure AI and Microsoft Power Platform.

There will be two different course levels, which learners can choose from depending on their experience.

One is aimed at college students and educators, and provides five cloud training modules and certifications. The other level is targeted at people who are either starting out on their career in tech or are mid-career and looking to enhance or develop new skills. It has three modules covering Azure AI, Azure and security. Specifically for this group, the training has been designed to enhance learners’ skillsets to complement their current technical abilities.

On completion of the course, participants will be awarded an industry-recognised certification. The course is assessed by exam, which can be taken online and repeated at no extra cost to the learner if they fail it on their first attempt.

“The past year has demonstrated in a very real way the power of cloud technologies. Put simply, without the cloud, we would not have been able to work or learn from home over the past 18 months nor would we be witnessing the pace of digital transformation that is underpinning our economic recovery,” said Kevin Marshall, Microsoft Ireland’s head of education.

“Cloud technologies are now critical to every industry and permeate every part of our society and, as such, we know that many of the in-demand jobs in both the technology sector but also increasingly traditional sectors require cloud skills.”

Courses for the Skill Forward programme start on 13 and 14 October.

Microsoft Ireland has a number of other free education initiatives under its Pathways for Life programme. Earlier this year, it launched the StepIn2Tech programme aimed at people out of work during Covid-19 who wanted to upskill for a tech career. It offers five digital skill courses in productivity, coding, infrastructure, cloud and design. It is delivered by Microsoft Ireland in collaboration with ICT educators Fastrack into IT.

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Blathnaid O’Dea
By Blathnaid O’Dea

Blathnaid O’Dea joined Silicon Republic in 2021 as Careers reporter, coming from a background in the Humanities. She likes people, pranking, pictures of puffins – and apparently alliteration.

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