Microsoft has expanded its Accelerate: Houston initiative across the state of Texas. The increased support aims to create new economic opportunities and provide students with digital skills in preparation for the workforce of the future.
The Accelerate programme is part of Microsoft’s Global Skills Initiative to help 25 million people acquire digital skills by the end of 2020.
“The expansion of our Accelerate programme to the state of Texas is an unparalleled opportunity to speed up the local economic recovery and bring critical digital skills to Texans,” said Kate Johnson, president of Microsoft US. “We hope this programme will be a transformative opportunity for students, teachers, workers and the entire community.”
Microsoft has partnered with the Texas Education Agency to deliver new programmes and events for students and educators. For example, students will be able to take part in the Microsoft Imagine Academy, which offers courses and certifications in computer science, IT infrastructure and data science, and the first state-wide Imagine Cup Junior for ages 13 to 18 will help participants learn how to use technology to address social, cultural and environmental issues.
The initiative will also help educators to adapt and adopt digital technologies. Microsoft will identify new schools to participate in its Technology Education and Literacy in Schools (TEALS) Philanthropies programme which connects teachers with technology volunteers to create sustainable computer science (CS) curricula.
“Closing the digital divide is critical to developing the current and future workforce,” said Michael Hinojosa, superintendent of Dallas Independent School District. “Our collaboration with Microsoft and the Texas Education Agency is a model for how to apply civic innovation to advance equity in
our schools. Initiatives like Accelerate: Texas are a direct investment in students that will open new pathways for innovation and future growth.”