Today at the Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting, Microsoft Corp. launched a three-year program to ensure that 1 million students from low-income families in the United States receive the benefits of software, hardware and discounted broadband Internet service. The commitment is focused on filling the gap in home access to technology and helps give students in digitally excluded homes the skills training they need to compete in the global market, increase employment opportunities and contribute to their community’s economic recovery.

Today’s announcement extends Microsoft’s global Shape the Future program, which has provided technology and access to over 10 million students around the world over the past five years. Through this new commitment, Microsoft will work with state, city, nonprofit and private organizations — including the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE) and One Economy — to develop and accelerate reduced-cost programs and policies that will include the following:

  • Windows-based PCs optimized for students
  • Broadband Internet access
  • Microsoft education software
  • Job skills training

“At Microsoft we believe all students should have access to the building blocks of a quality education,” said Anthony Salcito, vice president, Worldwide Education for Microsoft. “Putting technology in the hands of a student who did not have access is a powerful step on the path leading to graduation, employability and a better future.”

More information on Shape the Future is available at

http://www.facebook.com/shapethefutureproject and http://www.microsoft.com/publicsector/ww/programs/shape-the-future/Pages/index.aspx.

[via Microsoft]