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Wednesday , 13 December 2017
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Governments Use Coursera to Close Growing Skills Gaps

Coursera for Governments & Nonprofits launches with Partners in Egypt, Kazakhstan, Malaysia, Mongolia, Pakistan, Singapore and the United States

New Delhi – (January 27, 2017) – Coursera announces the launch of Coursera for Governments & Nonprofits, a unique effort by a leading technology company to close current and emerging skills gaps in the global workforce. Coursera’s initial partners include governments and nonprofits in Egypt, Kazakhstan, Malaysia, Mongolia, Pakistan, Singapore and the United States.

“The skills gap can no longer be ignored as a major force driving world events,” said Rick Levin, CEO of Coursera. “Millions of people lack the skills needed for new and better jobs, and increasing automation will only widen the gap. Governments and nonprofits focused on workforce development are eager to work with us and our university partners to deliver skills education to populations at unprecedented scale.”

Coursera for Governments & Nonprofits can be used by organizations focused on workforce development to curate online learning programs aligned to their labor market needs. Learning programs range from Digital Manufacturing and Business English to Programming for Everybody and Data Science, from schools like Stanford University, University of Pennsylvania, and University of Michigan. Government organizations can then instantly (and affordably) make university courses and certificates aligned to high-demand skills available to their constituents. To ensure successful implementation, Coursera offers consultation in learning model design, including how to blend Coursera’s accessible online learning with in-person supports. Partners will also gain access to analytics tools to track learners’ progress, skill acquisition and long-term impact.

Initial partners in Coursera for Governments & Nonprofits span seven countries.

In the United States, the Institute for Veterans & Military Families at Syracuse University (IVMF) has partnered with Coursera to offer training and certification to 1,200 transitioning service members, military spouses and veterans through its Onward to Opportunity (O2O) program. O2O participants will take coursework in Java programming, full stack web development, data analysis, and hotel management while receiving on-base support and career services. In addition, the University of New England in partnership with Coastal Counties Workforce, Inc., recipient of a TechHire grant (part of the national White House TechHire Initiative), will offer accelerated online-offline learning programs to unemployed and underemployed citizens across the state of Maine.

“Service members return home with a diverse set of skills, but often need to develop additional technical competencies to find careers in the rapidly evolving workforce,” said Colonel (U.S. Army, Ret.) Jim McDonough, Managing Director for Program and Services within IVMF. “Coursera offers relevant training from top institutions that our transitioning service members can do at their own pace, wherever they are – empowering them with the skills they need to find their next career.”

Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) is using Coursera to train individuals in data science and related topics, with completion incentives and optional meet-ups for participants. A group of learners from the first cohort have already completed the courses and reported that the program has helped their careers by enhancing their relevant experience, credentials and other benefits.

“We believe that governments can play an important role in connecting citizens with the jobs of the future,” said Dr. Karl Ng, MDEC’s Director of Innovation Capital Division. “Our businesses need more people skilled in data science. That’s what we’ve focused on in this first project with Coursera. We’re excited to expand our work with Coursera to other verticals.”

In Kazakhstan, the Astana International Financial Centre (AIFC) has partnered with Coursera to train 1,000+ citizens for jobs in the newly created financial center. AIFC Academy will combine Coursera courses in finance and soft skills with in-person learning opportunities and career support.

“Scaling skill development across the country is a critical challenge for us to achieve our economic development goals in Kazakhstan. The scale and quality that Coursera provides offers an extremely promising solution,” said Governor Kelimbetov of the AIFC.

Other early partners in Coursera for Governments & Nonprofits include:

Egypt – Egypt’s Technology Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center (TIEC) is executing the Next Technology Leaders initiative with a target to train thousands of talented youth in computer science, data science and entrepreneurship. Accompanying the online learning experience, participants also have opportunities to engage with physical study groups and receive coaching from local mentors.

Mongolia – Mongolia’s Guren Graduate Institute has partnered with Coursera to train educators in business and communication skills. At scale, the initiative will give an opportunity to thousands of students from Mongolian universities to study courses subtitled in Mongolian from the world’s leading higher education institutions through a blended learning model.

Pakistan  Overseas Technologies and Coursera have partnered with various public institutions, including the Prime Minister’s Youth Programme, to train 3,000 young adults across Pakistan. Participants will take online courses in computer science, data analytics, career success and language learning, and receive wraparound services from 13+ physical learning centers.

Singapore – Coursera is a partner of SkillsFuture Singapore and offers over 600 courses; Singaporeans aged 25 years and above can use their SkillsFuture Credit to pay for or offset the course fees. Coursera is also working with the Civil Service College, Singapore, to provide public officers with training in data analytics and data science.

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