Under a program called the Iraq Networking Academies, Iraqi professors began their first training sessions on 21 August 2004 to provide opportunities for more than 500 Iraqis to begin learning IT skills by early 2005, it is hoped that thousands more can acquire those skills over the next two years.
The first group of trainees in the program were faculty members from the science departments of four Iraqi universities. During their four-week session at Cisco’s Networking Academy in Beirut, the educators were brought up to date on information technology and network skills. Upon their return to Iraq, they will use program support to help establish regional academies at their respective schools. Ultimately there are to be 10 local academies, each with 500 students.
The program was endorsed by the Iraqi higher education ministry, which is providing salaries and allowances to the computer instructors working in Iraq. The courses–based on curricula developed by Cisco, Hewlett-Packard, and Sun Microsystems–focus on hardware and software for networking, as well as on the fundamentals of Unix and Java programming. Cisco contributed $1.2 million in equipment, curricula, teaching support, and training materials.
WSIS action lines related to this activity: Theme 1. The role of governments and all stakeholders in the promotion of ICTs for development
Theme 2. Information and communication infrastructure
Theme 3. Access to information and knowledge
Theme 4. Capacity building
Theme 7. ICT applications: benefits in all aspects of life
Theme 11. International and regional cooperation
Theme 12. Achieving WSIS targets (PoA, Section B)
Theme 13. Digital Solidarity Agenda (PoA, Section D)
Related MDGs: MDG 1. Eradicate poverty and hunger
MDG 8. Develop a global partnership for development
Programme, Training initiative
HP, Sun Microsystems and the Economic Commission for Western Asia. IBM has also provided a number of personal computers for use by professors in this program. Four Universities in Iraq.