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May 12, 2009

Certiport Launches Computer Program for India's Most Disadvantaged Children

By Anil Sharma, TMCnet Contributor

Certiport, a company which claims to prepare individuals with current and relevant digital skills and credentials for the competitive global workforce, has launched a pilot that will enable 500 eighth- through twelfth-grade students with little or no computer experience to develop and certify critical digital skills in Certiport Internet and Computing Core Certification (IC³) and official Microsoft Office certification programs.

Disclosing this, Certiport officials said that the program, which has been developed by Rotary Club of New Delhi through corporate sponsorship from Intel, Spice Telecom and CyberLearning, aims to help students stay in school and arm them with employability skills.
"India is experiencing astonishing growth in technology-enabled professional services," said Ray Kelly, president and CEO of Certiport.
Kelly said that Certiport is delighted to provide certified skills to a population that might not otherwise have the opportunity to support the growth of the country's digital economy.
According to the plan, qualified trainers from CyberLearning will provide instruction to students on essential aspects of computing, the Internet and Microsoft (News - Alert) Office applications at participating schools.
Company officials said that after completing the required Certiport IC³ curriculum, which includes extensive hands-on computer training, students will be trained to earn the globally recognized Microsoft Office certification for proficiency in one of five business applications.
Based on the success of the project, this pilot could be extended to more than 500 schools by as early as July 2009, officials pointed out.
"Reports indicate that 80 percent of graduates produced by India are not readily employable, so it's imperative that we start focusing on schools," said Pankaj Rai, chairman of the Rotary Club of New Delhi Literacy Committee in India and CEO of CyberLearning.
Rai was of the opinion that keeping students engaged in education through this program will enable them to advance beyond their present circumstances and seize opportunity.
CyberLearning was founded in 1989 as a project of National Education Foundation (USA) to make high quality information technology and critical management skills training affordable to everyone, especially to the disadvantaged.
Certiport in February had announced an agreement with Element K to deliver E-Learning for Microsoft Office and Windows Vista certification to its network of more than 12,000 centers in 135 countries worldwide.
Officially named E-Learning for Microsoft Business Certification, the E-Learning catalogue already familiar to Certiport customers provides self-paced, interactive learning for Microsoft Office certification.

Anil Sharma is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Anil’s articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Jessica Kostek

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