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French Version

Microsoft offers to teach journalists

Microsoft and the Press Club signed a protocol agreement Wednesday, inviting journalists to participate in computer training courses to improve their knowledge of Microsoft computer programs.

“Microsoft is proud to participate in supporting journalists to further their computer knowledge,” said Charbel Fakhoury, the general manager of Microsoft for the Eastern Mediterranean.

“This is an exceptional opportunity and journalists should take advantage of it,” Youssef Howayek, president of the Press Club Association, told participants at the press conference, held at the association’s headquarters in Downtown Beirut.

According to Fakhoury, technology is vital in assisting journalists in their profession, who, in turn, play a substantial role in informing society of the latest news.

The courses on offer will involve various Microsoft programs, including Office XP and Windows XP, but will vary according to demand and the number of applications. “The types of training sessions offered will depend on the demand and requirements of participating journalists,” Fakhoury said.

According to Howayek, the training courses are composed of four parts throughout the year, and are free of charge to those who are interested in improving their computer skills.

The courses will be offered in English, French and Arabic, according to the preferred language of the journalist. “Considering that Lebanon includes journalists from various publications of all three languages, we have opted to offer the courses accordingly,” Fakhoury said.

Since its establishment in Lebanon in 1999, Microsoft has made moves to foster IT skills and has offered special programs to familiarize people with computer programs.

Microsoft’s initial community-based program involved teaching orphans about the computers on its premises.

Microsoft also collaborated with the US Agency for International Development and Mercy Corps to gain recognition all over Lebanon, through the Smart Bus program. “These projects are just the beginning of Microsoft’s part in helping society,” Fakhoury said. “We will be introducing similar courses to companies, schools, and individuals as well.”

Beirut,07 07 2003
Tania Tavoukjian
The Daily Star
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