The NDSCS Division for Workforce Affairs, in conjunction with TrainND Southeast, has partnered with Microsoft to launch UpskillingND to support job seekers looking to build their skills for in-demand careers. Through this new initiative, NDSCS and TrainND will form cohort groups who will utilize self-paced virtual curriculum to learn new technology skills for in-demand jobs and earn certifications. The program is available at no cost to participants through March 31, 2021.
UpskillingND participants will have access to the following:
- Self-paced virtual curriculum from Microsoft and LinkedIn to learn skills for Customer Service Specialist or Sales Representative roles, enabling them to earn certifications and badges.
- One-on-one support from TrainND Southeast partners on the training content, plus coaching on interview skills and resumé writing.
- Virtual connection to a network of peers for support and community.
- Assistance with searching and applying for open positions.
- Connections to local companies with positions open for the certification skills.
Participants can work at their own pace through the curriculum. In addition to the virtual training sessions, there will be group and individual meetings with mentors, and customized workshops with industry experts and volunteer mentors.
“We are excited to work with Microsoft to provide critical training and support for individuals who may have been displaced from their job due to COVID-19, or who need to develop a new skillset to make a career change,” said NDSCS Vice President for Workforce Affairs Tony Grindberg. “This new initiative will also support industry needs in our region by providing upskilling opportunities for the workforce.”
Interested individuals must complete an online application to be considered for the program. The application deadline for the first of four scheduled cohorts is October 19, and class sizes are limited.
“As we continue to work through the impact of the pandemic, it is clear that progress must be made to bridge the digital divide. One primary focus is providing digital skilling in order to advance our community forward,” said Taya Spelhaug, Microsoft TechSpark Regional Manager. “Those who have lost their jobs, or were from an underserved community, have an opportunity to bounce back by acquiring new skills. We are so happy to partner with NDSCS’s TrainND team, to bring Microsoft’s Skills initiative and learning opportunities to North Dakota.”
As part of its Skills initiative, Microsoft, LinkedIn and GitHub have collectively reached more than 10 million learners around the globe.