Microsoft India has announced the launch of the CyberShikshaa for Educators initiative in collaboration with ICT Academy. In its first year, the program will skill faculty and higher education students from rural engineering colleges located in Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Telangana, Assam, Uttarakhand, Delhi NCR and Rajasthan.
In its first leg, the program will empower 400 faculty members across 100 rural institutions in India with industry relevant skills in cybersecurity, equipping them with the tools to train students. Through the trained faculty and ICT facilitators, the initiative will further train 6,000 students from rural engineering colleges to prepare them for a career in cybersecurity. In addition, Microsoft and ICT Academy will work with a strategic consortium of partners to facilitate job placement opportunities and internships for over 1,500 students. The program has been designed to ensure higher participation of women educators and women graduating students from rural geographies, to create an equitable and diverse cybersecurity talent pool.
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“As the cybersecurity threat landscape becomes more complex, investing in cybersecurity skilling and preparing the next generation of security leaders has become more important than ever. India is estimated to have 1.5 million job vacancies in cybersecurity by 2025. The CyberShikshaa for Educators initiative is a significant step towards creating a vibrant and diverse cybersecurity talent pool in India. Our intent is to take cybersecurity skilling to the grassroots and empower both educators and students with the skills needed to thrive in a digital economy,” Kate Behncken, Vice President, and Lead of Microsoft Philanthropies, said.