Elevate America, Now in 32 States and DC

Posted by Pamela Passman
Corporate Vice President, Global Corporate Affairs

With the addition of Louisiana and Ohio today, 32 states and the District of Columbia have now joined Elevate America, an initiative we launched 15 months ago to provide people across the United States with access to no-cost technology training and certification that helps them find employment. So far, we’ve offered more than 800,000 free training and certification vouchers through our partnerships with Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Nevada, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Tennessee, Utah, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia and Wisconsin.

We’ve learned a lot from working with these states. They’re each facing complex economic challenges, but it’s very encouraging to see how hard they’re working to reduce unemployment. Elevate America is designed to help by strengthening workforce skills, specifically the computer skills that half of today’s jobs require, and that will be required by an estimated 77 percent of new jobs created in the next decade. Of course, computer skills are just one set of skills that people need to find employment, yet we’re already seeing firsthand how important access to these skills can be.

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Now in Louisiana and Ohio and across the country, people will continue accessing training and certification through the summer. We’re also looking at how we can apply our learning from this program to make it even more effective.

For example, the unemployment rate among Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans is 20 percent higher than for nonveterans. Although veterans are highly trained in military and leadership skills, many lack the formal education, training and certification that employers require. In March, we announced the Elevate America Veterans Initiative, which will support active-duty service members and their spouses as they transition out of the military and also aid members of the National Guard and Reserve as they return to their civilian jobs. Microsoft will contribute $2 million in cash and up to $6 million in software over the next two years to help support technology training. We’re also partnering to help provide job placement, career counseling and other critical support services, such as child care and transportation assistance, to help ensure successful transitions to the civilian work force.

At Microsoft we believe that access to technology and skills can help enable sustained economic and social opportunity. We’re proud of the progress we’ve made in partnership with the states, and we remain committed to a continued focus on bringing resources to the people who need them most. If you’re interested in more information, please visit the Elevate America website.

Comments (7)

  1. Custom Computers says:

       We commend the Microsoft Corp. in leading this initiative.

       Technical training is of importance in todays fast changing environment as the workforce requires skills many displaced workers have not had the opportunity to learn.

       Thank you for the substantial commitment to job placement, career counseling and other critical support services as well.

  2. Dennis B. Reese says:

    That's great for Microsoft for helping people to learn new trades to land jobs and to have a happier life. Well, I could use some help myself, I recieved my CDL's in 1996 and being OTR did not pay-out like the companies promise and driving an concrete mixer was more profitable,it faded out in 2008. I did $100,000 to start my own business and that would help me help others. Thank You

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  4. Dina Bowman says:

    Regarding Elevate America , I think this is a great initiative by Microsoft however, I have committed to take 5 tests next week and need to do my e-learning but I'm having trouble with the Microsoft website ( to access courses) and the helpdesk was not able to help and I filled up everything to escalate the issue and nothing has happened. Every time I've asked for a manager or supervisor I get an excuse. They even told me on Friday that managers were on a meeting and they didn't know if I would be able to reach them because "just like us" in the US, they leave early on Fridays…really???????? I would like someone from Micrososft to contact me regarding this issue. dina08marie@yahoo.com

  5. Walter Eden says:

    Dear Microsoft, I sure hope you have not forgotten the Vietnam Vet like everyone else in this country.There are many who need help especially the homeless and disabled.If you can find the time let me know what you have done for these unrecognized herors who quietly moved into our society on their own without hardly any help from anyone.

  6. Yvonne Thomas/Microsoft says:

    Thank you for your comment. To learn about the work Microsoft is doing with U.S. military veterans, please visit http://www.microsoft.com/veterans. There are a wide variety of resources and organizations available to help veterans of all eras build the skills they need to be successful in today’s workplace.

  7. amu says:

    Where in Ohio can I get info on elevate america