Microsoft 'Intelligent Cloud Hub' to build AI-ready workforce in India

Microsoft on Thursday announced a three-year "Intelligent Cloud Hub" collaborative programme in India to empower institutes to skill students in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Cloud technologies.

The dedicated AI infrastructure and Internet of Things (IOT) hub programme will equip selected research and higher education institutions with AI infrastructure, build curriculum and faculty capability to skill students in AI and cloud technologies, the company said in a statement.

India is the first country to have such a programme under which Microsoft will support selected institutions with best-in-class infrastructure, onsite training for faculty and students, curriculum and content, access for participating students to cloud and AI services, developmental tools and developer support

"Jobs of tomorrow will require a very different set of skills, and collaborating, training and working with AI will be as important as collaborating with people," said Manish Prakash, Country General Manager-PS, Health and Education, Microsoft India.

"The Microsoft 'Intelligent Cloud Hub' programme aims to catalyse this with technology insights, cognitive skills, and a practical, in-depth understanding of developing intelligent connected solutions for application across industry and citizenship scenarios," Prakash informed.

Microsoft will also offer a wide range of AI developmental tools and Azure AI Services such as Microsoft Cognitive Services, Azure Machine Learning and Bot Services.

Training will include development workshops to help both the faculty and students build their skills and expertise in cloud computing, data sciences, AI and IoT.

"Our vision is to make participating universities and institutions 'Intelligent Cloud Hubs' in their own right at the end of the first three years," Prakash added.

Microsoft would also assist faculty in strategising content and curricula for project-based and experiential learning.

For research-focused institutions, Microsoft will provide AI-based recommendations for potential areas of research.

In April this year, the company announced the Microsoft Professional Programme (MPP) for the public.

The programme provides job-ready skills and real-world experience to engineers and others who are looking to improve their skills in AI and data science through a series of online courses.