Google launches its first digital skills program in Arabic

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Google recently launched ‘Maharat min Google’, a free digital skills-building program in Arabic to help people in the MENA region find jobs, advance their careers or grow their businesses. Based on a blended learning model, ‘Maharat min Google’ provides free courses, tools, and in-person digital skills training to students, educators, job seekers and businesses.

The online platform — g.co/Maharat — has 100 lessons across 26 core topics in digital marketing that include search engine marketing, social media, video, e-Commerce, geo-targeting, and data analytics, among others. Google will provide a certificate upon completion of the full course, which takes about nine hours to complete.

Google is looking for local partnerships across the region with governments, universities, private-sector businesses and nonprofits to expand the reach of its ‘Maharat min Google’ program.

The company signed an agreement with MiSK Foundation to conduct in-person trainings to more than 100,000 students across Saudi Arabia. Both collaborations with Injaz and MISK said they will target 50 percent female participation.

Google also announced at the launch event that Google.org, Google’s philanthropic arm, is granting $1 million USD to INJAZ Al-Arab, a regional nonprofit organization, which will roll out in-person trainings to 100,000 students across 14 countries in MENA focusing on youth in underprivileged and rural areas. The program seeks to offer digital literacy skills across the MENA region to support Arab youth in preparing them for future job opportunities and enterperneurship.

In a recent study by the World Economic Forum, 1 in 5 jobs in the Arab world will require digital skills that aren’t widely available today. 51% of youth consider unemployment their biggest concern and only 38% believe their education gives them the skills they need to enter the workforce. In MENA, there are 30 million women educated, connected and of working age, which represents the largest economic opportunity in the region today. More than 50% of university graduates are females, yet only 25% participate in the workforce.

Courses are available on g.co/Maharat and new lessons will be added in the future.