Today, October 29 2015, global IT startup IAM Cloud launched an ambitious initiative using Microsoft Corp’s technology to begin a worldwide lifelong education program called ‘University for Life’. The idea is simple: Why should education stop the moment a pupil or student graduates? People never stop learning - so what’s stopping colleges and universities unlock their educational resources to allow people of all ages and jobs to access them?“There have historically been a lot of barriers in allowing people from all over the world to access locally serviced IT resources. These problems begin with limitations in technology, but extend out to issues like legal contracts, licensing, and of course – cost. Universities and colleges simply haven’t had any other choice but to say ‘goodbye’ to their graduates.” says IAM Cloud CEO Adam Cosby.
Apprenticeships are at an all-time high, and with student debt spiralling, the status quo of higher education is under scrutiny by the public, politicians and the media.
“Internet technology advances quickly. And using the latest cloud computing technology in Microsoft Azure, we’ve been able to achieve what has never been possible before. We can now help educational institutions to offer genuine lifelong education to their graduates without high costs and burdens.
“We’ve solved the technological issues, but we’re also working on solving the other commercial and operational challenges too. We ultimately want everyone in the world to have lifelong access to high quality educational material. This is a massively ambitious challenge, and will take time to achieve, but we’re making important steps forward every day.” Continued Mr Cosby.
University for Life uses Microsoft’s innovative cloud platform, Azure, to help secure access to course content, educational materials, library resources, and tools like Office to help support the learning process. It also helps career growth by providing a university-verified CV, and an alumni directory and social network to allow people to make contacts and develop stronger professional relationships. In the short term, University for Life can help bridge the often painful gap between education and work, but in the long term it has the potential to become a lifelong education platform, for everyone.
“It’s great to see Microsoft Azure used in a way that can make a huge difference to education around the world,” said Nicole Herskowitz, Senior Director of Product Marketing, Microsoft Azure . “University for Life could be the right solution to help graduates stay connected to their colleges and universities, and the use of Microsoft Azure will help make all of that possible.”
University for Life is open to universities now, and will begin attracting its first cohort of graduates from January 2016. Universities interested in signing up are encouraged to make contact with IAM Cloud, as initial places are limited.
IAM Cloud is Microsoft’s Worldwide 2015 Education Partner of the Year.