A New Era with AI: 300,000 SA youth to gain skills for innovation and employment

A New Era with AI: 300,000 SA youth to gain skills for innovation and employment

About 300,000 South African will be empowered with artificial intelligence (AI) training and digital skills, fostering a future of innovation driving employability and economic growth.

This is a result of innovative AI training through a partnership between Microsoft South Africa and Youth Employment Service (YES).

The AI Youth Training Platform is an extension of a long-term relationship between Microsoft and YES and was lauded at Microsoft South Africa’s “A New Era with AI” event, that took place in Sandton on Monday.

Game changer  

It is seen as a game changer among the more than 1 000 IT professionals and developers who are leading the charge on AI transformation within the country.

The platform is designed to enable all young people to get access to, and awareness of AI – and be able to build skills from novice through to expert level.

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Lillian Barnard, President for Microsoft Africa said: “Together with YES, the company is not only addressing the pressing issue of youth unemployment but also helping create a culture of innovation and employability through digital capability building.

Microsoft’s approach to AI is based on meaningful innovation, empowering people, and responsibility. This partnership delivers on these three pillars as the means to grow a new talent pool for digital businesses to tap into not only in South Africa, but the rest of the world.”

Job creation

Ravi Naidoo, CEO of YES said the collaborative effort with Microsoft is a testament to its ongoing commitment to equipping the youth with the digital skills for future-facing sectors and careers.

“The significant number of beneficiaries underscores the scale of impact we want to achieve through this partnership.”

From a practical level, this partnership is geared towards creating a surge in job creation and enhanced employability to make significant strides for the country to put in place a more digitally inclusive economy.

Participants who complete the AI Expert Module and who meet key criteria, will be eligible for certification.