Microsoft India and the National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) have joined hands for the India edition of Microsoft Imagine Cup 2021, an annual innovation challenge for students and technology enthusiasts.

Imagine Cup is a global competition designed to empower students to apply artificial intelligence and other technologies to solve some of the world’s most critical social and sustainability issues.

This year’s Imagine Cup will be held virtually with students competing to solve global challenges across four categories: Earth, Education, Health, and Lifestyle.

NSDC, as the knowledge partner, will enable the nation-wide reach of the competition across states, districts, and skill development centers.

Microsoft and NSDC will jointly conduct virtual Imagine Camps across the country to drive awareness and educate students about the use of advanced technologies in their projects.

Students will get a chance to hear from past winners of the Imagine Cup about their experience and advice on tips and tricks, the release said.

Speaking on Microsoft Imagine Cup 2021, Dr. Rohini Srivathsa, National Technology Officer, Microsoft, said, As economies focus on building resilience, we are witnessing the power of technology and innovation to solve some of the world’s toughest challenges at scale.

“The Imagine Cup serves as a platform for the youth of India to couple technology with innovative ideas and build something that matters to them, makes a difference in their communities and creates societal impact.

“Our partnership with NSDC is aimed at empowering young people across the country to collaborate, innovate and build for a sustainable future,” Dr Srivathsa added.

Commenting on the initiative, Dr. Manish Kumar, MD and CEO, NSDC, said, “The country’s economic development depends on innovations, high-tech jobs and new-age skills.

“Imagine Cup underscores the importance of skills and learning in achieving inclusive and sustainable development of the youth. It is our endeavour to provide opportunities and platforms to harness their talent and prepare them for a globally competitive world.  NSDC is pleased to join hands with Microsoft and exchange knowledge related to digital skills demand and future requirements,” said Dr Kumar.

Imagine Cup is Microsoft’s flagship technology and innovation challenge for students, designed to inspire students to create innovative solutions that tackle some of the world’s biggest social, environmental, and health challenges.

Held annually since 2003, the Microsoft Imagine Cup is the world’s premier student technology competition, affectionately known by participants as the “Olympics of student technology competitions.”

World champions of Imagine Cup 2021 will win 75,000 US dollar along with a mentorship opportunity with Microsoft’s CEO, Satya Nadella.

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