SAN JOSE, Calif., Feb. 25, 2000 - Cisco Systems, Inc., together with World Bank Group and the International Youth Foundation, today announced a partnership with World Bank's Business Partners for Development (BPD) program to develop and expand career opportunities for underserved students around the world. The Cisco Networking Academy Program has been selected as the model for the BPD, which is being launched today to students at the Laguna College of Arts and Trade School in Manila, Philippines, 85 percent of whom are women.
"The two fundamental equalizers in the global economy are the Internet and education," said John Chambers, president and CEO of Cisco Systems. "The Internet is creating unprecedented opportunities for businesses, individuals and governments and the winners will be those with the right skills and knowledge to compete. The Cisco Networking Academy Program imparts networking and Internet skills to the next generation," he continued.
The Networking Academy program is a comprehensive e-learning environment designed to address the current worldwide shortage of information technology workers and to assist schools globally, in the installation and maintenance of their own networks. The four-semester curriculum teaches high school, college and adult students how to design, build, and maintain computer networks of local, national and global organizations.
World Bank Group and International Youth Foundation (IYF) are two founders of the Global Partnership for Youth Development (GPYD), which is one of four clusters within World Bank's Business Partners for Development ongoing initiative. Other clusters in the BPD include optimizing development of natural resources, developing sustainable mechanisms for water and sanitation, and promoting road safety activities to the urban poor.
The Partnership announced today, will use the resources of the BPD to extend the Cisco Networking Academy curriculum to more remote areas within the Philippines, giving at-risk students an equal opportunity for career development in networking and information technology.
"Many of the problems that threaten young people today, such as poverty, drug use and unemployment, do not respect national boundaries," said James Wolfensohn, president of the World Bank Group. "Never ignore the needs and aspirations of an emerging generation that will shape our global economy. These young people must learn the skills and knowledge needed to be responsible citizens in democratic societies, and to play an effective role in building strong economies. This is where initiatives such as the Cisco Networking Academy Program can contribute."
Cisco Networking Academies are active in all 50 U.S. states and in 60 countries worldwide. Currently, there are more than 30 Cisco Networking Academies in the Philippines, including Regional Academies located at Ateneo De Naga University, AMA Computer College, De La Salle Lipa, Meralco Foundation Institute, Philippines Science High School and University of Cebu. More information about the Cisco Networking Academy Program is available at www.cisco.com/edu.