CompTIA, the world's leading technology association, announced today that it is partnering with Microsoft Corp. on its flagship program for transitioning veterans, Microsoft Software & Systems Academy (MSSA).
The collaboration will make it easier for more than 35,000 United States service members to transition from active duty to high-paying careers in the civilian IT workforce.
CompTIA said two of its vendor-neutral skills certifications – CompTIA Network+ and Security+ – are now accepted as prerequisites by MSSA, an intensive 18-week training program that teaches transitioning service members the critical IT skills required for today's growing technology industry careers. Upon successful completion of the MSSA program, graduates are guaranteed a job interview at Microsoft or one of its more than 220 hiring partners.
The initial announcement of this partnership was made available this past weekend during the Veteran Employment and Education Committee meeting at The American Legion's 99th National Conference in Reno, Nev.
"Microsoft and CompTIA's partnership to increase education and employment opportunities for our transitioning service members and veterans is the right approach for the IT industry," said Joe Sharpe, The American Legion, Director, National Veteran Employment and Education Division. "Their efforts will be appreciated by those veterans who partake in their work and gain careers in today's fast growing digital economy. Two of the top IT certification organizations working to expand eligibility into the Microsoft Software and Systems Academy program is a testament on how the IT industry values veterans in their workforce."
"There are thousands of service members who have already demonstrated their passion for technology by earning CompTIA certifications," says Chris Cortez, vice president for Military Affairs at Microsoft and retired major general in the U.S. Marine Corps. "Accepting those certifications as a qualification for MSSA opens the program's doors wider for more service members, which will empower them to achieve more in their civilian careers."
Service members who hold either or both of the CompTIA certifications can use them as prerequisites for two of the four Learning Paths in the MSSA program: the Server & Cloud Administration path now accepts CompTIA Network+ and CompTIA Security+, while the Cybersecurity Administration path now accepts CompTIA Security+.
"U.S employers across geographies, industries, and markets are in need of trained and certified technology professionals to remain competitive in the digital economy," said Joe Padin, CompTIA's vice president for U.S. federal and education sales. "Our military veterans have the right skillsets to fill the tech talent pipeline. CompTIA is pleased to be a part of the Microsoft Software & Systems Academy and to expand our involvement with the nation's military community by helping our service men and women transition to rewarding civilian careers in the IT workforce."
"An estimated 1.8 million jobs in the nation's tech occupation workforce will need to be filled through 2024 due to technology changes, business growth, and retirements," said Dr. James Stanger, chief technology evangelist for CompTIA. "As employers work to close skills gaps within their IT teams and to ramp up their readiness for emerging technologies they're placing greater reliance on professional certifications from credible providers."
Special Promotion from CompTIA
To make it even easier for MSSA applicants to acquire the certification that best fits their goals, CompTIA is offering them a 26-percent discount on the cost of CompTIA Network+ and CompTIA Security+ certifications. For more information on the discount and registration, applicants should contact the academic partner administering MSSA at their location: Saint Martin's University at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, or Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University at other program sites. The Microsoft Virtual Academy offers free courses to qualify for MTA certification.