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Open Source Software Maker Offers Academic Program

Open Source Software Maker Offers Academic Program
By Ronald Roach


Red Hat Inc., a leading Linux and open source software provider, has announced the Red Hat Academy, a comprehensive educational package enabling schools and colleges to certify their students in Linux operating system and applications software. With Linux becoming a popular alternative to the Microsoft Windows operating system, the Red Hat Academy is expected to boost the movement toward Linux-based open source software. Open source refers to software whose basic code is public and is shared among software developers, which is in contrast to a proprietary system, such as Microsoft Windows.

Available initially in English, the program will deliver quality, up-to-date IT curricula based on Red Hat’s operating system and open technologies, and will allow schools to administer the Red Hat Certified Technician (RHCT) exam. The educational package is an academic version of Red Hat’s Red Hat Certified Engineer (RHCE) training and certification program.

The Red Hat Academy is being launched at a time when schools and colleges, states and countries are facing budget shortfalls, while remaining under pressure to raise the bar, bridge the digital divide, compete globally and justify educational initiatives, according to company officials.

“The costs and legal burden of proprietary software for education are becoming unsupportable, with direct effect on opportunity and futures for young adults and the work force as a whole,” says Matthew Szulik, chairman and CEO of Red Hat. “The call has gone out for a better way to educate computing skills, for access and choice of reliable software technology in schools and colleges worldwide.”

“Linux is uniquely positioned to transform technology in education, and now there is a world-class Red Hat curriculum geared for schools and colleges, based on their RHCE curriculum,” says Tom Miller, a vice-provost at North Carolina State University, which is a Red Hat Academy Partner.

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