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Low-code training is bridging the digital employability gap

Low-code training is bridging the digital employability gap

Microsoft’s Ryan Cunningham and PMI’s Sam Sibley share how Power Platform University Hub helps students develop much-needed skills 

Alice Chambers |

With technology becoming a critical part in almost every element of an organisation’s operations, the demand for employees who can innovate and solve technology-related business problems has increased dramatically within the last few years. As such, universities are turning to low-code and citizen development training to help boost their students’ employability.  

That’s why Microsoft has partnered with the Project Management Institute (PMI) to create the new Power Platform University Hub, a global programme that teaches students to solve business problems with low-code solutions. The initiative provides students at participating universities with the ability to take PMI Citizen Developer and Microsoft Power Platform courses. Students can complete the curriculum and take the respective exams to earn certifications which highlight their critical skills and future employability.  

“The Power Platform University Hub provides students with an integrated curriculum focused on the power of using low-code platforms to accelerate digital transformation,” says Ryan Cunningham (pictured left), vice president of Power Apps at Microsoft. “Students in the programme are granted access to a learning journey that includes more than a dozen courses. Courses span topics like low-code development and analytics tools. Students who successfully complete the curriculum can earn two certifications: a PMI Citizen Developer Trained Practitioner Micro-Credential and a PL-100 Microsoft Power Platform App Maker certification.” 

Power Platform University Hub was launched on 29 November 2022 and will be used in universities and colleges around the world to promote low-code knowledge and app-building skills.

Students who complete the course curriculum will have the knowledge and skill set to streamline processes, gain efficiencies, improve data intelligence and help drive organisational digital transformation, making them more attractive to prospective employers.  

“PMI has been working with Microsoft on the Power Platform since June 2021,” says Sam Sibley (pictured right), global heal of citizen developer at PMI. “It’s been exciting to partner with Microsoft and bring our expertise in citizen development best practices, thought leadership and governance to the next generation of aspiring professionals. Through this joint venture, we’ll be able to help equip young people entering the workforce with the forward-thinking skills they need to drive tech-enabled projects and be successful in the job market.” 

Following the successful completion of the pilot programme, there are currently more than 2,000 students across 36 universities around the world who have started their learning journeys.  

“The feedback we’ve received from instructors and students have been really encouraging as they’re already seeing a lot of value in the coursework and exercises,” says Sibley. “We’re excited to see the programme grow over the next few years and see what innovative and creative outcomes will be dreamed up by students using citizen development and the Power Platform.” 

Two students looking at a laptop screen

Students who complete the Power Platform University Hub curriculum will gain knowledge and skills that are attractive to prospective employers

Non-technical students can use Power Platform University Hub to create applications, software solutions and enterprise-grade applications without needing to learn to code.  

“Training more students in low-code tools addresses the existing gap that has resulted from a shortage of pro-code developers and the growing need for organisations and companies to be able to create business solutions without relying solely on overstretched IT departments,” says Cunningham. “On completion, students will be more attractive to potential employers with the skills needed to successfully achieve digital transformation in the workplace including the ability to build apps, data visualisations, chatbots and websites.” 

This article was originally published in the Winter 2022 issue of Technology Record. To get future issues delivered directly to your inbox, sign up for a free subscription

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