Microsoft Grant to Washington State Community Colleges is Part of Broader Commitment
Microsoft’s $10.8 million grant in software to Washington state’s community and technical colleges, like the company’s $10 million grant two years ago, will be used by students, faculty and staff at all 32 schools for instruction, data gathering and administrative purposes. Microsoft committed to upgrading the software used at the colleges when it announced its initial gift in 1996.
“Not only does this gift strengthen our two-year colleges through technology and applied expertise, it shows a commitment to maintaining that strength,” said Earl Hale, director of the Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges. “Microsoft’s donations also underscore the value of alliances between the community college system and progressive companies that have a significant stake in a high-quality education system.”
Gov. Gary Locke applauded the company for recognizing the value of the state’s public two-year colleges. “Washington’s community and technical colleges provide top-notch educational and training opportunities for citizens all across our state,” the governor said. “Microsoft’s generous technology grant will help continue the tradition of lifelong learning into the next century.”
The Washington state grant is the latest in a series of efforts by Microsoft to support educational programs at community colleges across the country. In February, Microsoft and the American Association of Community Colleges announced the first grant winners in their Working Connections program, a five-year, $7 million program to support information technology programs at community colleges across the U.S. Working Connections is meant to encourage development of innovative information technology programs, with the goal of training workers to succeed in the grantees’ local technology industries.