Microsoft plans to offer free access to edu­ca­tion­al con­tent on LinkedIn Learn­ing, Microsoft Learn and GitHub Learn­ing Lab. 

Angela Lang/CNET For the most up-to-date news and infor­ma­tion about the coro­n­avirus pan­dem­ic, vis­it the WHO web­site.

Microsoft launched an ini­tia­tive Tues­day aimed at offer­ing dig­i­tal-skills train­ing to 25 mil­lion peo­ple around the world by the end of 2020. As part of the ini­tia­tive, the com­pa­ny will be pro­vid­ing free access to edu­ca­tion­al con­tent on LinkedIn Learn­ing, Microsoft Learn and GitHub Learn­ing Lab. 

“In six months, the world has endured mul­ti­ple chal­lenges, includ­ing a pan­dem­ic that has spurred a glob­al eco­nom­ic cri­sis,” Microsoft Pres­i­dent Brad Smith said in a blog post. “As soci­eties reopen, it’s appar­ent that the econ­o­my in July will not be what it was in Jan­u­ary.” 

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Over 42 mil­lion peo­ple, about a fourth of Amer­i­can work­ers, have report­ed­ly filed for unem­ploy­ment in the past two months. A sur­vey from the Eco­nom­ic Pol­i­cy Insti­tute in April esti­mat­ed that fig­ure is low­er than the true num­ber of Amer­i­cans out of work, say­ing that more peo­ple could’ve filed if unem­ploy­ment process­es were eas­i­er.

See also Coro­n­avirus unem­ploy­ment: Every­thing to know about how to apply, pay­ments and more Will there be a sec­ond stim­u­lus check and if so, when? What we know today

“One of the key steps need­ed to fos­ter a safe and suc­cess­ful eco­nom­ic recov­ery is expand­ed access to the dig­i­tal skills need­ed to fill new jobs,” said Smith.

The ini­tia­tive will work to iden­ti­fy in-demand jobs and pro­vide access to free dig­i­tal train­ing and low-cost cer­ti­fi­ca­tions to help peo­ple devel­op skills required for those posi­tions, Microsoft said. 

The com­pa­ny said it’ll also pledge $20 mil­lion in grants to non­prof­it orga­ni­za­tions around the world help­ing those affect­ed by COVID-19. A fourth of the grants will be giv­en to US-based non­prof­its that are led by and serve com­mu­ni­ties of col­or. 

Coro­n­avirus Microsoft Noti­fi­ca­tion on Noti­fi­ca­tion off Tech Indus­try

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