IBM Launches New Skills Programs to Help Students and Technology Professionals Prepare for Jobs of the Future

IBM Launches New Skills Programs to Help Students and Technology Professionals
                        Prepare for Jobs of the Future

PR Newswire

ARMONK, N.Y., Dec. 5, 2012

ARMONK, N.Y., Dec. 5,2012 /PRNewswire/ --IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced an
array of programs and resources to help students and IT professionals develop
new technology skills and prepare for jobs of the future. The initiatives
include new training courses and resources for IT professionals, technology
and curriculum materials for educators and expanded programs to directly
engage students with real-world business challenges.

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The new resources will help reduce a critical technology skills gap outlined
in IBM's 2012 Tech Trends Report released today. The report, authored by the
IBM Center for Applied Insights, found that only 1 in 10 organizations has the
skills needed to effectively apply advanced technologies such as business
analytics, mobile computing, cloud computing and social business. In addition,
nearly half of the educators and students surveyed feel there is a major gap
in their institution's ability to meet the growing demand for advanced
technology skills.

To view an interactive graphic that illustrates key findings from the report

"Having a highly skilled workforce is critical to an organization's ability to
innovate, meet client demands and grow," said Jim Corgel, general manager,
academic and developer relations, IBM. "In response to the growing IT skill
gap, IBM is expanding its skill development programs in key areas such as
cyber security, mobile computing and commerce."

New Curriculum, Technology & Training for Faculty
In the U.S. alone, IT jobs are expected to grow by 22 percent through 2020
according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. To help faculty better prepare
students for these opportunities, IBM today unveiled the largest expansion of
its Academic Initiative since the program began.

For the first time, IBM will offer access to curriculum and training resources
on IT security to help students gain market-ready cyber security skills.
Cited as the top barrier to adoption of advanced technologies in the IBM Tech
Trends Report, cyber security is also a key job growth area. The information
cyber security workforce is expected to nearly double by 2015. The new cyber
security offerings include:

  oPre-Packaged curriculum that brings real-world technology security
    scenarios into the classroom, helping students understand enterprise
    challenges and do in depth analysis of the trends uncovered in the IBM
    X-Force report.
  oNo-charge access to security software that professors can use in the
    classroom to teach students how to test applications for bugs and check
    network and virtualized servers for vulnerabilities. Professors and
    students can remotely access the newest zEnterprise mainframe, a highly
    secure system that can be used to prepare students for real-world
    computing challenges using enterprise IT skills.

The ability to bring the latest enterprise technology directly into the
classroom at no additional cost is critical in building skills. In addition to
cyber security, IBM now provides software licenses and how-to training
materials in three new areas:

  oBig Data & Analytics: Now professors can bring big data software directly
    into the classroom with access to a variety of IBM big data offerings.
    E-Books and learning modules on Hadoop geared for business and computer
    science students are also available.
  oCommerce: Now professors can download digital marketing and analytics
    software from IBM's Smarter Commerce initiative for use in the classroom.
    Through a series of hands-on learning modules, students study topics like
    benchmarking and learn how to develop code to uncover online buying
  oMobile Computing: New hands-on learning modules on HTML 5 and DOJO prepare
    students to develop mobile applications. Professors can also download IBM
    mobile development software to give students hands-on experience.

To help faculty update their skills on advanced technologies, IBM today
unveiled a Knowledge Exchange. This online resource allows professors from
around the world to share and collaborate on courseware and best practices.
The initial offerings in the Knowledge Exchange will feature curriculum from
winning IBM Smarter Planet grant faculty members.

New Training Courses and Resources for IT Professionals
As more organizations turn to technology to solve tough business challenges,
the need for skilled IT professionals continues to grow in all industries. For
example, a recent report from TechAmerica outlines the need for government
employees to sharpen their skills in the area of big data. In addition, the
2012 IBM Tech Trends report cites the lack of professionals with business
analytics expertise as the number one barrier to adoption for that technology.

To make it easier for IT practitioners to stay current with rapidly evolving
technologies, IBM is providing:

  oNew, no-charge, learning materials, technical resources and online
    technical communities on mobile computing, cyber security and commerce
    technologies through IBM developerWorks. For example, in the new security
    section, developers can access examples of weaknesses in applications,
    learn about typical web attacks and collaborate with peers around best
    practices for responding to vulnerabilities.
  oNew in-person training and certification for IBM Business Partners seeking
    to engage in Smarter Commerce and digital analytics that complement the
    new educational materials, installation guidelines and best practices
    resources on developerWorks.

New Programs to Engage Students

IBM is also working more closely with students to help them understand how
advanced technologies like business analytics and security are critical for a
variety of career paths such as business, marketing and science.

  oVirtual Career Event: In early 2013, the company will host IBM Career
    Exploration: Make a difference.  The global virtual event will give
    current university students and recent graduates the opportunity to
    interact with IBM executives and leading experts, learn how to build and
    apply their expertise, further their networks and best position themselves
    in a highly competitive job market.
  oIn-Class Challenges: IBM is expanding its work to bring real-world
    challenges into the classroom through activities like Watson Case Study
    Competitions, The Great Mind Challenge and special events like the Student
    Innovator Challenge recently held in Singapore where more than 100
    students developed solutions to address Smarter Planet related challenges.
  oJob Board: Later in December, IBM's Power Systems Academic Initiative will
    launch a Power Skills Job Board, emphasizing entry-level opportunities for
    member school students with interest in IBM's Power Systems.
  oExpanded Access to Higher Education Resources: IBM recently joined the
    National Coalition for Advanced Technology Centers, providing IBM's Power
    Systems Academic Initiative member schools access to a wider network of
    higher education resources, specifically those that advocate and promote
    the use of technology applications that enhance economic and workforce
    development programs and services.
  oOnline competitions: In mainframe contests across the world, students gain
    hands-on experience with enterprise systems, tackling technical challenges
    that give them exposure to security, cloud and big data issues experienced
    by the world's largest companies. In 2012, over 13,000 students have
    registered to compete in 13 mainframe contests running across 25

IBM and academic experts have shared their views on the specific skills needed
in cloud computing, business analytics, social business and mobile computing.
To view the videos, visit the IBM Ecosystem YouTube channel.

The IBM Center for Applied Insights conducted the research and analysis for
the 2012 Tech Trends Report. The report is based on a survey of more than
1,900 IT and business professionals, students and professors from around the

To access the new resources for professors and academic institutions:

To access the new resources for developers:

To read the 2012 Tech Trends Report:


Melissa Turesky
IBM Software Group


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