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Microsoft AI Skills Initiative to Empower Global Workforce: Free Courses, Certifications, and Grants

Microsoft has announced the beginning of its Microsoft AI Skills Initiative, which will offer free training, credentials, and funding to assist people and groups all across the world in utilising the potential of AI. The programme, which was created in partnership with LinkedIn, comprises basic courses, the first Generative AI professional certification, a worldwide grant challenge in association with data.org, and access to free learning opportunities and resources. This article examines the specifics of Microsoft’s AI Skills Initiative, the importance of it closing skills gaps, and the chances it offers for people and businesses to embrace AI’s potential.

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The Need for Microsoft AI Skills Development

AI is playing a more and bigger part in a variety of industries and job sectors as a result of the rapid growth of technology. The demand for people with AI abilities is, however, rising, and there is a substantial talent gap between this demand and the talent pool. Microsoft is aware of the need to equip people with AI abilities so they can stay ahead of the development of skills gaps and use AI to spur creativity and productivity.

Microsoft AI
@image: Microsoft

Overview of Microsoft’s AI Skills Initiative

The Microsoft AI Skills Initiative is a comprehensive attempt to solve the AI skills gap and is a part of the company’s Skills for Jobs program. The programme consists of a number of parts intended to give people and organisations the tools and resources they need to develop their AI competence and promote economic growth.

Collaboration with LinkedIn for Professional Certification

A professional networking site called LinkedIn will provide online professional certification for generative AI as part of the effort. The certification programme gives a Career Essentials credential upon completion and covers fundamental AI principles, including responsible AI frameworks. The first professional credential in generative AI will be this one, according to the online learning market.

Grant Challenge with data.org

Microsoft is starting a grant competition in partnership with data.org to help fund organisations that are committed to Generative AI workforce training and AI research. Participation is encouraged by non-profit groups and academic institutions working on generative AI implementations that are equitable and community-driven, especially with historically marginalised groups. Financial assistance, resource access, cloud computing resources based on Azure, and technical advice from Microsoft AI and GitHub specialists will all be made available through the award programme.

Microsoft AI
@image: Microsoft

Trainer Toolkits and Bite-sized Content

Microsoft will offer teacher and facilitator toolkits to help with AI training and upskilling. These toolkits will include downloadable, bite-sized content that discusses real-world applications of artificial intelligence. By making these tools available, Microsoft hopes to enable instructors and trainers to efficiently provide AI training courses and provide students with useful AI abilities.

Multilingual Course Availability

The AI Skills Initiative will provide basic courses and certifications in a variety of languages. Microsoft intends to add courses in Spanish, Portuguese, French, German, Simplified Chinese, and Japanese after initially presenting them in English. A larger worldwide audience can access and use AI training resources thanks to this multilingual approach.

Filling the AI Talent Gap in India

Microsoft AI Skills Initiative is particularly pertinent in India, where there is a tremendous demand for AI talent. Despite having a sizable AI skill pool, the country nevertheless has a 51% shortage of AI and machine learning specialists. With a focus on training female students from Tier II and III towns, Microsoft has been actively promoting AI skilling efforts in India. The AI Skills Initiative makes an additional contribution to narrowing the skills gap and giving Indian employees the tools they need to effectively use AI technologies.

Microsoft’s Commitment to Skills Development

The Microsoft AI Skills Initiative is a component of Microsoft’s larger dedication to closing the global digital skills gap and promoting digital literacy. It is consistent with other Skills for Jobs programme aims, such as filling the skills gap in cyber security and boosting sustainability skills. Microsoft wants to make it possible for everyone, regardless of background, to achieve more in the age of AI by giving people and organisations the opportunity to gain AI capabilities.


A key step towards democratising AI skills and enabling people and organisations to realise the potential of AI is Microsoft AI Skills Initiative. Microsoft and its partners are aiming to close the AI skills gap and spur economic growth while assuring fair and community-led AI implementations through free courses, professional certifications, grant challenges, and resources. The effort has a great deal of potential to revolutionise the world’s workforce, give people the tools they need to use AI technology wisely and promote a more inclusive and successful digital future.


AI was used to conduct research and help write parts of the article. We primarily use the Gemini model developed by Google AI. While AI-assisted in creating this content, it was reviewed and edited by a human editor to ensure accuracy, clarity, and adherence to Google's webmaster guidelines.

Tech Today India
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