Google Unveils New Canadian Initiative to Boost Digital Skills Training

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It is a proven fact that a comprehensive understanding of digital literacy is imperative to help a nation grow and prosper.

Google is doing their part to try and help Canadians better gain access to digital skills with their new Grow with Google initiative. The program helps citizens access the best resources Google has to offer, all in an effort to improve their skills, careers and businesses. This new announcement comes with $2 million in grants from Google.org that will bring two of the tech giant’s digital skills training programs to Canada: Applied Digital Skills and the Professional IT Support Certificate.

Through a partnership with Canada Learning Code, Google will help provide Canadians with access to their Applied Digital Skills Program, a blended online and in-person curriculum that uses practical problems to teach digital skills. The program will be offered in both French and English.

“Technology is the key to opportunity, which is why we are launching Grow with Google in Canada,” said Sabrina Geremia, Google’s country director for Canada. “By making our resources available to everyone online, by bringing hands-on training into communities across the country, and by partnering with organizations like Canada Learning Code who are devoted to expanding access to digital tools and training, we can help Canadians grow their skills, their opportunities, and their futures.”

The Professional IT Support Certification Program is an eight-month program that brings in beginners and teaches them to be job-ready with a compact and fast-paced course. The Google-developed program is offered through online course provider Coursera and boasts over 64 hours of video lessons and interactive assignments. It is geared towards adults looking to learn new digital skills and enter the technology stream.

“Digital skills are tools of empowerment,” says Melissa Sariffodeen, CEO of Canada Learning Code. “Our vision is a Canada in which all people have the knowledge and confidence to harness the power of technology to achieve economic and personal fulfillment. Our partnership with Grow with Google puts us one step closer to achieving that vision by allowing us to offer new content and scale our existing coding and digital literacy curriculum to more Canadians.”

Finally, Grow with Google events will be hosted around Canada, offering workshops, in-perosn training and individual sessions. These gatherings are more suited towards small business owners and entrepreneurs looking to familiarize themselves with an increasingly digital world.

Google has been making some key investments into Canada’s STEM community over the past year, including a recent $2.1 million injection into Waterloo via the form of a community space and a reignited partnership with Actua.

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