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Checking In with Microsoft Software & Systems Academy

Microsoft Software & Systems Academy is up and running on seven military bases. Hundreds of learners, all veterans or transitioning active duty military personnel, have completed the program — with an 80 percent placement rate in IT jobs.

Last year on Aug. 26, I blogged here about a Microsoft partnership with Embry Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU) to provide an intensive, full-time 18-week training course to get men and women transitioning from active duty military service back into civilian life. See Microsoft Expands U.S. Military Certification Outreach Program for a quick trip back to 2016.


joe scanlan mssa

MSSA graduate and Embry-Riddle Worldwide student Joseph Scanlan assists Mike Foldes, an IT support specialist with Navy Personnel Command in Memphis, Tenn., in troubleshooting a simultaneous application deployment across their IT environment during a recent site visit. Source: Embry Riddle


At the time, the program had been running in pilot mode for about 10 months, followed by a half-year period of full and actual operation. During this early period, military personnel could attend classes at one of four bases: California's Camp Pendleton (Server and Cloud Administrator), Kentucky's Fort Campbell (Server and Cloud Administrator), Georgia's Fort Benning (Cloud Applications Developer), and Fort Bragg in North Carolina (Cloud Applications Developer).


I’m pleased to report that, in the year since last summer, the program has expanded quite a bit and is now handling hundreds of students (across all participating military installations) each month. More than 400 students have now completed the program altogether.


Graduates are being (or have been) placed into full-time IT positions in research, industry, academia, and more. In addition to the bases already mentioned in the preceding paragraph, the MSSA program is now up and running at the following additional locations as well:


● Camp Pendleton/Oceanside (Calif.): Cybersecurity Administration
● San Diego (Calif): Cloud Applications Developer
● Colorado Springs (Colo.): Server and Cloud Administrator


Upcoming locations include the following:


● San Antonio (Texas): Cybersecurity Administration will commence on Sept. 8, 2017.
● Jacksonville/Fleming Island (Fla.): Cloud Applications Developer will commence on Oct. 16, 2017.
● Camp Lejeune (N.C.): Cybersecurity Administration will be available sometime soon in 2017 (presumably sometime after Oct. 16).
● Honolulu (Hawaii): A yet-to-be-announced program or programs will commence before the end of 2018.
● Quantico (Va.): Ditto (see Hawaii) for January 2018.