The National FFA Organization and Microsoft yesterday announced a new partnership which will help more than 650,000 US students learn digital skills. The partnership will also bring science, research, and entrepreneurship opportunities to classrooms across the US as part of a Blue 365 initiative.
For those unfamiliar, the National FFA Organization provides leadership, personal growth and career success training through agricultural education. It is expected for Blue 365 to be unveiled in Indianapolis, Indiana, this October at the 91st National FFA Convention & Expo.
Blue 365 aims to solve the most critical challenges facing farming communities, like respecting the planet or feeding the world. This partnership was announced at an event in Fargo yesterday with National FFA CEO Mark Poeschl and Microsoft's Brad Smith and Mary Snapp. As explained by Brad Smith, President and Chief Legal Officer at Microsoft:
"While digital technology is transforming every part of the American economy, not everyone is acquiring the skills to thrive...As a company, we're focused on ensuring everyone, regardless of their geography or circumstance, has access to the digital skills they need to compete and prosper. And our partnership with the National FFA will expand this work, helping students across the country prepare for digital jobs and the farms of the future."
Mary Snapp, Corporate Vice President and Lead for Microsoft Philanthropies, dived deeper into the partnership in a blog post on LinkedIn. She also penned another post which revealed that Microsoft is investing $500,000 in partnerships for two computer science and STEM learning opportunities for students of color in Seattle.