The project was
announced at an event at REACH’s Hà Nội center on Tuesday as
part of Microsoft’s YouthSpark program, a global initiative that aims to
empower young people by equipping them with computer science skills.
Speaking at the
event, Global Director of YouthSpark Programs Ms. Yvonne Thomas, outlined the importance
of Microsoft’s support for the project.
“As technology has become an integral part of people’s daily lives around
the world, we’re seeing a growing demand – from students, parents, teachers,
governments, and nonprofits – to teach youth not only how to use technology,
but also how to create technology to help them become the innovators and
drivers of growth and opportunity in their communities,” Ms. Thomas said.
“We believe all young people – especially those
from disadvantaged backgrounds - should have a chance to access to computer
science education so they can learn this foundational subject matter and
develop the computational-thinking and problem-solving skills that are critical
for their future,” she said.
Under the project, Microsoft provided financial, curriculum and technical
support to roll out coding training to 240 disadvantaged students currently
enrolled in REACH’s web and graphic design course in northern and central
Vietnam and a 3D modelling class in Hanoi.
Around 460 other students undergoing training in REACH’s food and
beverage, sales and marketing and housekeeping courses will also be provided
with ICT training, including skills using the Microsoft Office suite, to
enhance their employability.
Regional Director of Microsoft Philanthropies Dr. Daiana Beitler added that
students would also be participating in Hour of Code, a free online tutorial for
students and educators that teaches coding using a wide range of games and
Also speaking at the event, REACH Executive Director Pham Thi Thanh Tam
said that the partnership would play an important role in helping Vietnam’s
most disadvantaged youth get their foot in the door in Vietnam’s increasingly
competitive job market.
“The REACH model is predicated on evolving with the market and providing
what employers need,” said Ms. Pham.
“With support from industry-leading partners like Microsoft,
organisations like REACH can strengthen their capacity to deliver high quality
training that can help combat youth unemployment.”
*REACH students participate in "Hour of Code" and ICT training in Hoi An, Hue and Danang.