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The Verde Independent | Cottonwood, Arizona

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9/2/2014 1:28:00 PM
Mingus Union High School launches Microsoft IT Academy
Program will equip students with 21st Century Skills for success

Mingus Union High School has announced the launch of the Microsoft IT Academy program to equip students with real-world technology skills needed to thrive in the 21st century economy. Mingus joins more than 15,000 Microsoft IT Academies around the world.

"We're committed to providing our students with the most up-to-date knowledge and skills so they can pursue higher education, and secure jobs that contribute to the statewide economy and their communities," said Dr. Paul Tighe, Superintendent.

"Our membership in the Microsoft IT Academy program, enables us to provide a road map to technology proficiency and industry-recognized Microsoft Certification credentials keeping pace with what today's employers are looking for and sets our students up for future success."

In 2012, IDC released a global study focused on 600 IT hiring managers and the challenges faced in hiring skilled workers. According to the study, lack of certification, training and experience were the three top reasons given by the hiring managers for unfilled positions. The Microsoft IT Academy program bridges this gap and connecting the worlds of education and work.

It is a comprehensive program that supports ongoing technology education for students, teachers and other education professionals spanning computer basics to high-level programming, along with information and communications technology management using Microsoft technologies. The program's resources include access to online learning content, Official Microsoft Course titles course materials and curriculum and instructor tools.

"Microsoft is committed to empowering students and teachers around the world to reach their full potential," said Alison Cunard, General Manager for Microsoft Learning Experience. "By combining education and cutting-edge technology, the Microsoft IT Academy helps enable success and prosperity in an evolving global economy."

Microsoft IT Academy will provide a convenient and flexible learning environment where students can get hands-on experience with the latest technology to gain a competitive edge in today's job market or the next step in their academics.

The IT Academy is embedded in our Career and Technical Education program, in partnership with Valley Academy for Career and Technical Education.

VACTE CTE Director Ralph Fobair was instrumental in bringing this opportunity to Mingus. The high school's recent upgrades in its network and software platforms made this IT Academy launch possible so students have the right tools for participation.

Rick Finley, business teacher at Mingus, has already incorporated the academy into the curriculum for his business classes.

His students will gain essential technology skills beneficial in most careers and to most employers.

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