MICROSOFT CORP. said 150,000 trainees in the Philippines have acquired new digital-ready skills during the pandemic via its online courses.

In a statement Thursday, Microsoft said it “has helped over 30 million people in 249 countries and territories gain access to digital skills, of which over 150,000 are from the Philippines.”

The free courses and affordable certifications are offered in collaboration with GitHub, Inc. and LinkedIn Corp. These courses are on offer until the end of this year.

Microsoft Philippines General Manager Andres Ortola said in a statement Thursday, “COVID-19 has increased the need for digital skills, and we are committed to meeting that need, however we can — paving the way for a more resilient Philippines and allowing all sectors of society to contribute to the economic recovery.” 

It will also partner with the National Government in providing training to 800,000 civil servants.

Microsoft also plans to launch an online service, Career Connector, which will career-match jobseekers to tech-enabled occupations. Microsoft aims to steer 50,000 people worldwide to new careers through the platform.

In partnership with LinkedIn, Microsoft also offers the Microsoft Teams app Career Coach, which aids students on potential career paths and connecting them with mentors to help them gain real-world skills. — Gillian M. Cortez