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Cloud Career Jump Start: our virtual certification readiness program

It’s no question that the cloud computing industry is booming and cloud experts are in high demand.  In 2020, 67 percent of organizations surveyed in the IDG Cloud Computing Report added new cloud roles and functions (source). 

So there are plenty of cloud jobs out there, but if you don’t have years of experience, you might find it difficult to get one. This is especially true for members of underrepresented communities, who face other kinds of systemic barriers in education and employment.

To help meet this demand and democratize opportunity, Google Cloud is introducing its first virtual Certification Journey Learning program for underrepresented communities across the United States—Cloud Career Jump Start. The program is free of charge for participants, and includes technical and professional skill development and resources with an aim to provide a readiness path to certification via the Google Cloud Associate Cloud Engineer Exam

Google Cloud’s Certification Journey Learning Program

The program offers free access to the Google Cloud Associate Cloud Engineer training, which provides support preparations for the Certification Exam. This industry-recognized certification helps job applicants validate their cloud expertise, elevate their career, and transform businesses with Google Cloud technology. Learn more about the exam by watching the Certification Prep: Associate Cloud Engineer webinar. 

Designed specifically for Computer Science or Information Systems-related majors (or relevant experience), the 12-week program offers:

Exclusive free access to Google Cloud Associate Cloud Engineer-related training to support preparations for the Certification Exam. 

Guided progress through the certification prep training on Qwiklabs

Office hours hosted by Google Cloud technical experts. 

Technical workshops, including sessions with Googlers who earned cloud industry certifications and have built impactful careers in cloud tech, such as Google Cloud’s Kelsey Hightower (a Principal Developer Advocate) and Jewel Langevine (a Solution Engineer). 

Earn your Associate Cloud Engineer Certification 

Curious if you qualify to apply for the program? We’ve put together a guide below to help: 

What does an associate cloud engineer do? Associate Cloud Engineers deploy applications, monitor operations, and manage enterprise solutions. They also use the Google Cloud Console and the command-line interface to perform common platform-based tasks, to maintain one or more deployed solutions that leverage Google-managed or self-managed services on Google Cloud.

Who’s eligible? We are encouraging applicants from groups that have been historically underrepresented in tech including Black, Latinx, Native American & Indigenous communities. Applicants should have six or more months of hands-on experience in a Computer Information Systems-related major, and/or relevant experience through online courses, boot camps, hackathons or internships. Although the ability to program is not required, familiarity with the following IT concepts is highly recommended: virtual machines, operating systems, storage and file systems, networking, databases, programming, and working with Linux at the command line.

How do you know if you are ready for the program? 

To get an idea of what the program will cover:

Watch the Certification Prep: Associate Cloud Engineer webinar

Complete the Skill IQ Assessment via Pluralsight

Review the Associate Cloud Engineer Certification Exam Guide 

Take the Associate Cloud Engineer Practice Exam

Jump start a career in cloud infrastructure and technology 

Following the hands-on training, Google Cloud will offer an additional 9 months of career development resources and activities. This includes an online support community, mentoring with Googlers & partners including SADA, EPAM Systems Inc., and Slalom, resume and interviewing support from Google Recruiting & Staffing, and additional career workshops. We are also partnering with a number of Black-owned and -operated, nonprofit and cloud training organizations like Kura Labs

Cloud certifications open doors 

Want to hear more about this program from two Googlers who completed it? We asked Kelsey and Jewel to share more on how certifications helped them launch their careers in the cloud industry: 

“IT certifications introduced me to the game; opportunities and hard work helped me change it.” – Kelsey Hightower, Staff Developer Advocate, Google Cloud Platform 

“Becoming certified as a cloud computing professional combined with prayer, networking, and practice has kept me moving on my purposeful and rewarding career path as an engineer.” – Jewel Langevine, Solution Engineer, Google Cloud Solutions Studio

Kelsey and Jewel’s wisdom doesn’t end there. They play a central role in the program, sharing more about how they navigated certifications and leveraged them for success. 

Apply today to Cloud Career Jump Start

The program is now live in the United States, with plans to expand to other regions in the coming months. It is completely virtual, and all training is on-demand so that participants can access their coursework anytime, anywhere via the web or mobile device. To determine whether you (or someone you know) would be a great fit for the Cloud Career Jump Start, check out our guidelines andapply.

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