(Photo by Mohd RASFAN / AFP)

AWS launches re/Start program in Malaysia

  • AWS re/Start program enters ASEAN through Malaysian gateway
  • Targets non-traditional talent pool members for upskilling

The re/Start program by Amazon Web Services (AWS) has entered the ASEAN market, offering its certification course through Southeast Asia’s first virtual university, Malaysia-based UNITAR International University.

This program, offered at no cost to participants across 38 countries, is a 12-week training course that certifies unemployed or underemployed individuals for cloud careers and connects them to potential employers, thus building a pipeline of diverse non-traditional cloud talent.

According to Andrew Sklar, Head of AWS Training and Certification, Asia Pacific and Japan, the program in Malaysia will allow training in cloud skills to those “outside of the traditional talent pools tech organizations look to, non-traditional learners who would otherwise not really be part of a cloud skills talent pipeline”.

“re/Start is a skills development program preparing those learners for entry-level careers in cloud,” said Sklar, adding that graduates of the program usually get taken on in roles such as cloud operation, site reliability, infrastructure support, technical or adjacent business support functions, among others.

AWS program includes hands-on experience


AWS UNITAR re/Start upskilling initiative

Throughout the program, students will also undergo hands-on labs, and real-world-scenario-based exercises in addition to their coursework, a mix of technical and soft skills, with IT fundamentals like the necessary basics in Linux, network, database, and security fundamentals, as well as programming basics.

Towards learning about the cloud, the program provides foundations in cloud, cloud security, architecting, support services, and tooling and automation, along with lessons on AWS core services and systems operations.

Communication skills, project management, teamwork and collaboration, as well as networking do’s and don’ts and establishing a digital presence, make up the employability skills to round up the program.

The first cohort in Malaysia started their training in December 2021 and will graduate in March 2022, with the class of 25 coming from various backgrounds ranging from teaching to customer service.

Governmental support

Working closely alongside UNITAR on this upskilling initiative is the Social Security Organisation or Pertubuhan Keselamatan Sosial (PERKESO), a government agency under Malaysia’s Ministry of Human Resources. PERKESO will connect learners with potential employers in search of candidates with a cloud computing skillset.

“UNITAR’s vision is to accelerate innovative solutions in a global learning ecosystem for a sustainable future, which will aim to be delivered via its mission to create highly employable and entrepreneurial global citizens.”

“This is aligned with the program’s mission to help unemployed and underemployed individuals who might not otherwise have access to technical education to develop the skills they need to pursue entry-level cloud roles,” said Puvan Balachandran, CEO of UNITAR.