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Developing Talent for a Global Networked Economy

March 10, 2011 - 2 Comments

Cisco recently announced that the Cisco Networking Academy has enrolled its 1 millionth concurrent student for the first time. An example of cloud-based education delivery, the Networking Academy teaches students how to design, build, troubleshoot, and secure computer networks for increased access to career and economic opportunities — in communities all around the world.

In partnership with educational institutions, government administrations and community based organizations, the Networking Academy delivers information and communications technology (ICT) education through in-classroom learning combined with innovative cloud-based curricula and tools to prepare students for careers in the global networked economy.

How Investment Fuels New Job Opportunities

Telecom service provider investment creates demand for new employee talent, which is a global phenomenon. As an example, telecommunications companies should contribute to job creation — given the huge growth in their market, according to the  Minister of Communications for South Africa, Roy Padayachie.

“We seek to guarantee that ICTs [information and communications technology] will make [a] substantive contribution as an enabler for economic growth and the creation of new jobs and skills amongst our people as we strengthen the foundation for a knowledge-based economy,” he said.

Empowering Women with ICT Knowledge and Skills

International Women’s Day 2011 was held on March 8. The theme this year was “Equal access to education, training and science and technology: Pathway to decent work for women.” The UN Secretary-General’s message included the following comment:

“This year’s observance of International Women’s Day focuses on equal access to education, training and science and technology. Cell phones and the Internet, for example, can enable women to improve the health and well-being of their families, take advantage of income-earning opportunities, and protect themselves from exploitation and vulnerability. Access to such tools, backed up by education and training, can help women to break the cycle of poverty, combat injustice and exercise their rights.”

Moreover, ICT skills training can really effect change in women’s personal lives.

In the following video clip, Tae Yoo, Senior Vice President of Corporate Affairs at Cisco, discusses the impact of the Cisco Networking Academy. After being absent from the classroom, take a guess at how six very determined women performed.

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  1. @Majid, Thank you for sharing your perspective. I too was pleased to see the IWD theme of science and technology this year. Your point about the need for more internship opportunities makes sense -- it does ease the transition from learning the essential skills to practicing a profession in a commercial setting.

  2. Congratulations to Cisco for reaching this magnificent landmark! The Networking Academy provides great interactive learning tools for students enabling them to learn and physically implement their skills and knowledge on numerous simulators. In the UK, I noticed how the Networking Academy really grew between 2000 and 2005 in various local educational institutions enabling more people to access the Academy and achieve an exiting and important qualification in this field. I thought the theme for International Women's Day was well decided and sends a clear message that needs to be broadcasted around the world. The reason I say this is because I still see a significant imbalance in terms of women working with technology. The story told by Tae Yoo in the video shows the potential and success that can be achieved by women, whichever country they are in and it is very important for the wider educational communities to recognise, encourage and bring out the best in this. Roy Padayachie makes an important statement about telecommunication companies, but i also feel that as well as contributing to job creation they should also put in place 'work experience placements' for students who can be eligible when they reach a certain stage or semester of their studies. The transition between study environment and work environment is big, therefore the experience gained from such a program can benefit both the employee as well as the newly trained and qualified network associates and professionals.