Microsoft East Africa today announced the start of the East African regional qualifications rounds of the 2016 Microsoft Office Specialist World Championships (MOC). This global competition invites top students from across the globe to represent their respective countries to showcase their skills on Microsoft Office applications including Word, Excel® and PowerPoint®. This is the 15th year that Microsoft has held the MOC World Championships, with the 2015 edition attracting more than 600,000 unique candidates from 80 countries. One hundred and forty-five student finalists participated in the final round of competition with six students emerging as winners.
For the 2016 MCO edition in Kenya, Microsoft has partnered with Tabarin Consulting, Cetiport via the Adopt a School’s #InspiredMe Campaign, to make Microsoft Office Specialist training and exams accessible to all learners in the country – including those in Kenyan public schools. Over 50 beneficiary schools are targeted this year, to enable 2,500 students from public and rural schools acquire industry skill certifications, job readiness and international exposure. The aim is to provide each beneficiary school with the relevant e-books, practice tests, relevant infrastructure such as Microsoft IT Academy and certification exams, to enable 50 students to participate in the MOSWC 2016 Edition.
The national qualifying round for the first ever Kenyan edition of Microsoft Office Specialist World Championship was concluded on June 15th 2015, with participants from different academic institutions and the public library enrolling for the competition. Six student competitors proceeded to represent Kenya in Dallas, Texas from August 9th to 12th, 2015 sponsored by Northpole College. One of these six student competitors, Jatinkumar Waghela was listed in the Top 10 worldwide rankings in the Excel® 2013 category globally.
“This (trip to the US) has given them confidence to take on any challenge in the world and this experience will become a valuable asset as they continue their academic and professional careers, and it is sustainable in that it provides a framework for long-term success to be globally competitive in matters ICT in Kenya.” George Kiptalam, Tabarin Consulting Managing Director
Benefits of Microsoft Office Specialist (MOC) Certification
Once a student has passed a Microsoft Office Specialist certification exam, they earn a recognized certification that shows potential employers that they can hit the ground running in (with respect to basic computer proficiency).
“We are thrilled to partner with Certiport to help improve the students’ skills and knowledge of Microsoft Office in order to give them a competitive advantage when entering the workforce. Students use Office every day for school work and activities that are most important to them. Office not only helps students stay organized and get their work done today but at the same time develops skills that will be required when they enter the work force. In fact, no other software or services show up in the top 20 most important skills identified in a recent research report.” Kunle Awosika, Microsoft Kenya’s Country Manager.
In addition, the report mentioned above shows that holding a MOS certification can earn an entry-level business employee as much as $16,000 more in annual salary than uncertified peers. Source: Microsoft
The MOC World Championships is part of Microsoft’s expansive YouthSpark program, which has helped over 307.5 million young people in over 100 countries around the world. YouthSpark includes many programs like developer training, Imagine Cup, Microsoft Virtual Academy, Digi Girlz, to name a few.
Microsoft Office Specialist World Championships Prizes
- The First Place Champion receives $7500 (USD) for 2013 exams and $5000 (USD) for 2010 exams along with a medal of achievement and certificate.
- The Second Place winner receives $3750 (USD) for 2013 exams and $2500 (USD) for 2010 exams along with a medal of achievement and certificate.
- The Third Place Winner receives $1500 (USD) for 2013 exams and $1000 (USD) for 2010 exams along with a medal of achievement and certificate.
To eligible for the Microsoft Office Specialist World Championship, candidates must be students that are enrolled in an approved, degree-seeking academic institution recognized by the state or country in which it operates. The student must also be between the ages of 13 and 22 (as of June 15, 2016). Once these requirements are met, the student chooses his or her preferred category in the categories listed below (more than one category can be chosen). The student will then take a Microsoft Office Specialist certification exam, upon which their score will automatically be entered into the MOS World Championship.
The 2016 World Championship will be judged on the following six (6) categories:
- Microsoft Office Specialist Word 2013
- Microsoft Office Specialist Excel 2013
- Microsoft Office Specialist PowerPoint 2013
- Microsoft Office Specialist Word 2010
- Microsoft Office Specialist Excel 2010
- Microsoft Office Specialist PowerPoint 2010
During the Qualifying Round, a Student can participate in MULTIPLE Exam tracks. For example, they can submit an Excel 2010 and Excel 2013 Exam. However, if they qualify to participate in a Regional/Country Round or the Final Round in Orlando, Florida, USA, they can only compete in only ONE Exam category.
- June 15 2015, 1st Day to enter
- June 15 2016, Deadline to enter
- August 7-10 2016, World Championships, to be held in Orlando Florida, United States of America.
Kenyan Certiport Partners
The Microsoft Office Specialist certification exams are facilitated by Certiport, the world leader in performance-based certification exams delivered through an expansive network of over 12,000 Certiport Authorized Testing Centers worldwide. In Kenya, the certification exams will be facilitated by Certiport partner, Tabarin Consulting:
Tabarin Consulting Limited
P.O. Box 38104,
Tel: +254 (0) 731 433 904
- Students must also be between the ages of 13 and 22 (as of June 15, 2016).
- Students participating in the World Championship must be able to provide proof of age and student status upon request.
- Previous participants of the World Championship Round ARE eligible for the 2016 Championship. However, they cannot compete in the Exam they previously competed in during a World Championship Round. For example, a student who competed in Microsoft Excel® (2010 or 2013) during a previous year’s World Championship Round, can compete in Microsoft Word or PowerPoint® in the Qualifying Round and the World Championship Round of this year’s competition
- There is no limit to the number of times a student may sit for any particular eligible exam as long as he/she is not in violation of the Microsoft Office Specialist exam retake policy. Students who fail to abide by the Microsoft Office Specialist exam retake policy will be immediately disqualified from the Championship. Certiport retains the right to disqualify students for appropriate cause.
Learn more about the Microsoft Office Specialist World Championships here: http://moschampionship.com/