The pandemic has affected employment in different industries. One critical step to fostering a safe and successful economic recovery is to offer workplaces additional access to digital talent to fill emerging job vacancies. The Microsoft Skills for Employability program supports participants, regardless of the extent of their IT background, through an opportunity to upskill or secure alternative employment if they had lost employment due to COVID-19. The program will do this by providing attendees with the knowledge necessary to obtain a Microsoft certified designation while focusing on career growth and advancement.

This hands-on programming will allow program participants to enhance their digital knowledge by selecting one of three Microsoft certification pathways: IT Administrator, Data Analytics, or Software Developer. Participants will be supported to successfully undergo learning and achieve the relevant certification through a range of coaching and mentoring opportunities.

Sheridan College will provide workplace communications training specific to digital work. They will work alongside Microsoft and other technology partners to co-facilitate opportunities for participants to position their skills and value in the sector.

Program Components

  • The program will feature ACCES Employment’s employment preparation formula and bring together best-in-class content from LinkedIn Learning, Microsoft Learn, and third-party training providers, and ensure that it is easily accessed and acquired by program partcipants.
  • The program will use a hybrid approach of self-learning and online instructor led classes to support learners to complete their Microsoft pathway.
  • Each learning path will include a sequence of learning content designed to help job seekers develop the core skills needed for each role. In addition, these role-based learning paths will provide a learning continuum through numerous opportunities to reskill and upskill, covering a broad range of skills from entry-level digital literacy to advanced product-based skills for senior technology roles.
  • Each learning path also includes collaborative courses, allowing individuals to move through content and demonstrate their learning and obtain a certificate of completion.
  • With the more technical roles, job seekers will be provided opportunity to delve deeper into Microsoft Learn modules, gaining the most in-demand skills on widely used technologies.
  • Job seekers pursuing Developer roles will have access to learning labs to practice their skills.
  • Exams and the corresponding industry-recognized Microsoft Certifications that can be accessed in this program are as follows:
    • Microsoft Certified: Azure Fundamentals
    • Microsoft Certified: Azure Data Fundamentals
    • Microsoft Certified: Azure AI Fundamentals
    • Microsoft Certified: Power Platform Fundamentals
    • Microsoft 365 Certified: Fundamentals
    • Microsoft Certified: Azure Administrator Associate
    • Microsoft Certified: Azure Developer Associate
    • Microsoft Certified: Azure Security Engineer Associate
    • Microsoft Certified: Power Platform App Maker Associate
    • Microsoft 365 Certified: Teams Administrator Associate
    • Microsoft 365 Certified: Security Administrator Associate
    • Microsoft 365 Certified: Developer Associate
    • Microsoft Certified: Data Analyst Associate

Program Benefits

  • The program offers seamless access to Microsoft certifications and focuses on helping job seekers secure employment during challenging economic times.
  • Participants will receive customized employment services including personal branding, networking, interviewing, and social media profiling to strengthen their marketability.
  • This program is informed by employers who participate in program delivery.
  • Participants receive access to Speed Mentoring® events and benefit from guest speakers and industry insights.
  • Participants obtain a range of Future Skills / in-demand professional soft skills that are sought by employers and promote career advancement.
  • Participants are provided with opportunities to work collaboratively and creatively together to develop leadership skills and insights regarding workplace culture and platform-based labour market attachment.
  • Participants achieve digital transformation through virtual collaboration tools.
  • Participants receive customized training from post-hire sector and language coaches to support employment retention and career progression.

Program Dates

2024 Cohort Dates:

  • April 29 – June 28, 2024
  • August 5 – October 4, 2024
  • October 7 – December 6, 2024

Program Eligibility

  • A resident of Ontario
  • Has international post-secondary education (degree or diploma)
  • Has international work experience in a highly skilled occupation (i.e., an occupation requiring a certificate of qualification or a post-secondary diploma or degree)
  • Basic computer skills
  • Has English language proficiency of Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) Level 7 or above
  • Is one of the following:
    • a permanent resident
    • a refugee claimant with a valid work permit
    • a naturalized Canadian citizen

Program Fees


Advisory Committee

  • Emma Davies, Manager, Business Development, Projects and Innovation, Sheridan College
  • Jordy Fujiwara, Founder, Clear Crossing Academy
  • Mauricio Oliveira, Global Black Belt for Customer Service Business Applications, Americas, Microsoft