Amazon launched the “Amazon Future Engineer” program in the United States a few years ago, which is essentially a broad community-based push into schools through computer science education.
And today, the company announced the launch of the program in India, with the goal of empowering children and young adults from underserved and disadvantaged communities to create better futures for themselves.
More than 1 lakh students from 900 government and aided schools across seven states will have access to computer science learning and career opportunities in the initiative’s first year.
The tech giant has already invested over $6.5 billion in India and is looking to expand into the lucrative Indian education market. An Amazon Academy has already been established.
As a result, Amazon’s new computer science initiative is another step in the right direction in terms of education.
Focus on e-learning via smartphones
While smartphone penetration in India is significantly higher than computer availability, “most existing CS learning modules and online content are not mobile-friendly,” according to the Amazon press release.
As a result, the company may be develop smartphone-specific modules.
Amazon’s Future Engineer program “aims to address this gap by bringing early exposure and access to CS education to students via in-person, online, and blended learning formats,” according to the company.
Amazon announced that it was collaborating with Code.org, a global non-profit organization dedicated to computer science education, to bring high-quality, mobile interactive CS content to Indian students.
Taking the local nuances into account, the curriculum has been contextualized for the Indian teacher and student community in government school settings, and will offer students coding fundamentals along with future-focused tech courses like Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning and Natural Language Processing (Voice Technology) in Indian languagesAmazon
Amazon intends to expand its computer science education offerings
In its first phase, Amazon’s Future Engineer program will target students from government schools in Karnataka, Delhi, Haryana, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Odisha, and Telangana.
The initiative will mainly target students in grades 6 through 12, as well as teachers and educators who will be trained to teach computer science in a more engaging manner. The Amazon Future Engineer program will provide students with hands-on experiences in addition to enabling content and curriculum.
“Initiatives will include ‘Class Chats’ through which students meet Amazonians to understand tech industry careers, and ‘Amazon Cyber Robotics Challenge’ where students learn programming basics while coding robots and discover how the company uses robotics to deliver millions of products around the globe,” the company stated.
We aim to bring the Computer Science curriculum closer to these students in the languages of their comfort and choice, empower them with right skills and tools to be able to expand their career outlook.Amit Agarwal, Global Senior VP and Country Head, Amazon India
We’ve been honored to work with the Amazon Future Engineer initiative in many countries for several years and we’re excited to strengthen our partnership as Amazon launches the program in India.Hadi Partovi, Founder and CEO of Code.org
Amazon India also aims to expand its CS-related education offerings in the country. Scholarships, internships, problem-solving hackathon events, and targeted mentorship programs by Amazonians will all be part of Amazon Future Engineer’s support for students.