13 Aug 2010
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Microsoft invests in Kiwi tech education

The University of Canterbury and Microsoft New Zealand have unveiled a “public-private” partnership that will see the formation of a world-class education centre of excellence in the region.

The alliance is said to be the first of its kind in New Zealand and joins 50 other public-private partnerships already in place around the world. The main aim of the alliances is to transform education, foster local innovation and enable jobs and opportunities.

Microsoft will provide the tools, support and expertise, while the University provides the research centre.

Paul Muckleston, Managing Director of Microsoft New Zealand, said, “Education is vital to New Zealand’s sustainable social and economic progress. We are very excited about the alliance and look forward to providing students and researchers with the tools and capabilities to empower them to unleash their knowledge and creativity.”

University of Canterbury Vice-Chancellor, Dr Rod Carr, added, “As our University seeks to be fit-for-purpose in the 21st century, we are guided by our strategic intent to challenge ourselves harder, concentrate on what we are good at and connect better. I am truly delighted that this commitment we are making on behalf of our talented students and faculty of today – and the future – has been acknowledged in such a way by Microsoft.”

The education alliance will remain in effect for three years and offers the University access to a range of Microsoft technologies and resources.

A key element includes an annual Research Intern Award which will provide the opportunity for two post graduate students to undertake a three to six month internship at Microsoft Research’s Beijing lab.

Microsoft will also become a Platinum Partner of NZi3, the national ICT Innovation Institute.

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