New Delhi: IBM has launched its academic training programme in India, in collaboration with select universities and institutes to provide training to students on IBM and open standards-based technologies.
The company plans to collaborate with over 300 institutes in the country to train over 75,000 students by the end of the year.
Shanker Annaswamy, managing director, IBM India, said about 250,000 IT students graduate every year in India. However, the projected demand for trained IT professionals is estimated at over 400,000 per year. According to estimates by the National Association of Software Services Company (Nasscom) India will have to educate at least two million additional IT workers over the next eight years, if the country's IT software and services sector is to achieve an annual revenue of $70-80 billion in 2008.
IBM will work with universities that support open standards and seek to use open source and IBM technologies for teaching purposes both directly and virtually via the Web.
IBM has a large presence in schools and universities in the US.
Among the programmes IBM conducts is its global 'used technology donation programme, which provides used personal computer systems to qualified non-profit organisations that provide adult education, training, and computer literacy, as well as agencies serving persons with disabilities. Since 1996, the program has provided over 12,000 used PCs to more than 2,500 non profit organisations in the US, and the programme is now being implemented in Singapore, Brazil, and Argentina and will soon expand to Germany, France, and the United Kingdom.
IBM also collaborates with states and districts in the US and other countries to create effective online learning that brings courses, such as languages and AP mathematics, to students in rural and inner city areas that do not offer them.
These "virtual" schools also provide access for students who are ill or required to hold part time jobs during the school day. Additionally educationists use online schooling to serve home-schooled students with material required to meet state academic standards and at-risk students whose behavior prevents their participation in the classroom.
Reinventing Education is an IBM grant program that delivers expertise to spur school reform efforts throughout the world.