Microsoft recently announced the opening of its first Datacenter Academy (DCA) in Asia, which is based in Singapore and was established in collaboration with the Institute of Technical Education (ITE). Over the course of five years, the DCA will empower 300 ITE students with a focus on developing practical data center skills.
The DCA is an extension of Microsoft’s ambition to enable ITE students to prosper in a developing ICT sector through a shared commitment to upskill students for technical professions and prepare them for careers in the digital economy.
According to IDC, by 2026, Microsoft, its network of partners, and its clients will have added over 86,000 new jobs in Singapore, over 50,000 of which will be in the skilled IT sector.
The DCA will provide data center skills integration into ITE’s existing technical and professional development track, give mentorship and professional development tools, and provide a sustainable learning lab for hands-on instructional training.
Additionally, Microsoft will provide scholarships to up to 20 ITE students who are interested in a career in the datacenter industry through the ITE Work Study Diploma program. These scholarships will cover the cost of tuition. Selected scholars will have the chance to interview for open datacenter roles at Microsoft in Singapore after completing their academic program.
According to Lee Hui Li, Singapore Managing Director of Microsoft, they need to bridge the employment and skill gap while making sure that their citizens have the necessary opportunities and skills for success. As they create a resilient, digitally inclusive future for Singapore.
Moreover, as they develop their ecosystem of partnerships, they continue to be focused on making strategic investments in Singapore as they embrace digital perseverance across industry, government, and their local communities. They will be better able to function at all societal levels as a result, and their shared future will experience wide, inclusive economic growth.
For Low Khah Gek, Chief Executive Officer of ITE, they are excited to work with Microsoft to give their Work-Study Diploma students the skills they need to succeed in the datacenter industry. This is a quickly expanding industry, and its partnership with a potent market leader will put their students at the vanguard of market developments. With Microsoft, they can develop industry skills and get people ready for thrilling professions in this increasingly digital world.
The DCA utilizes Microsoft and ITE resources to provide students with an applied program that links education to a career in data centers, a developing ICT industry. Microsoft works with chosen education partners to provide curriculum assistance, contributions of servers, laptops, and datacenter equipment for labs, opportunities for mentorship, and job experience in Microsoft datacenters through its 12 Datacenter Academy locations across the world.
Data Center-focused Curriculum
The Work-Study Diploma programs in Data Center Infrastructure & Operation, Mechanical & Electrical Services Supervision, and Logistics & Supply Chain Management will begin offering DCA curriculum to students in all three ITE Colleges in January 2023.
The program’s main competencies, which revolve on datacenter infrastructure management, IT support, troubleshooting, and mechanical services, closely match those needed for data center employment across the tech industry. Additionally, it provides hands-on instruction in a variety of topics, including cybersecurity, automation, data analytics, and artificial intelligence.
Students who successfully complete this datacenter-focused curriculum can receive either a Diploma or a Certificate of Completion. This equips students with credentials applicable to the industry for a career in technology.
Hands-on Learning Experiences in a Real-world Setting
Microsoft workers will also support and guide ITE students through ongoing engagement with DCA participants and alumni, helping to better prepare them for careers in the datacenter industry. Students will receive career and workplace coaching from professionals in the field and have the chance to improve their interview and resume-building abilities.
Students will be among the first in Singapore to use servers at their campus datacenter lab, which were donated by the Microsoft Circular Center in Singapore, while they practice their datacenter skills in ITE.
The Microsoft Circular Center, the first of its kind in Asia, allows decommissioned cloud computing technology from their data centers to be reused and put to other uses. By 2025, the global initiative wants to repurpose 90% of the hardware used in cloud computing.
Students will have the opportunity to put their technical knowledge into practice in a practical setting at the Datacenter Lab at ITE College East. They will get the chance to put their knowledge of tasks like cable installs, managing the physical infrastructure of data centers, changing out parts, diagnosing physical hardware, and hardware and network diagnostics to the test.
The DCA joins a larger variety of Microsoft efforts that have been put in place locally to create a resilient, digitally inclusive Singapore and support broad economic growth, in addition to enabling consumers to achieve more with less.
These programs include public-private partnerships to have a beneficial influence on the neighborhood in terms of accessibility and cybersecurity, as well as national skilling programs like #GetReadySG and Let’s Skill Up that bridge the employability and skill gaps.
Microsoft also continues to forge strong alliances with organizations in the public and private sectors in order to develop sustainable solutions, guide the adoption of responsible AI, and fortify vital infrastructure for a digital future.