A smarter tech community is a stronger tech community. This is the guiding principle behind MVP education efforts that are driving tech learning, upskilling and certification in Europe and Asia.
Azurebrains, for example, operate in Spain. The founder, Azure MVP Alejandro Almeida, started the project as a simple blog in 2017 to publish relevant content from experts.
Thanks to the high quality of the posts and its team spirit, the blog became very popular with the cloud community in a matter of months. The number of keen contributors has increased to its current team of 21 diverse writers, which is coordinated by Azure MVP Roberto Tejero, with recent months generating more than 190,000 visits and 4,000 engagements.
Further than the blog itself, Azurebrains boosts different events, from must-attend dates like the Global AI Bootcamp in Spain to regular meetups managed by activity coordinator and Developer Technologies MVP Alberto Picazo.
During the pandemic, the group also realized that many new people were joining their Telegram channel looking for help with Microsoft Azure Certification, so Azurebrains expanded to create a mentoring program to focus on certifications. Now, group members are even moderating Microsoft Baseline Fundamentals sessions collaborating with Microsoft Azure BG.
“Certifications validate the professional expertise under unified criteria and offer partners and customers a highly valuable tool to recruit experts for their projects,” the team say. “Azurebrains is helping to motivate our members to get Azure certifications by offering educational resources, mentoring support inside our community, and sharing and solving technical doubts.”
Meanwhile, in multiple countries across Asia, MVPs are also bringing together their communities with education. For example, Chinese AI MVP YuXiang Wang is dedicated to learning more about Azure Machine Learning with self-educational tools like Microsoft Learn and Docs. YuXiang looks to not only expand his professional capacity but change the perception of elder developers as well.
“I would like to prove to Chinese enterprises that the learning ability has nothing to do with age,” YuXiang says. “We should abandon the idea that learning ability declines after the age of 35. I’m really interested in learning new technical knowledge and sharing it with peers in my communities.”
Indian Azure MVP Lalit Rawat, meanwhile, runs India’s largest meetup for Azure aspirants. The meetup offers several certification programs to train a wide audience, which Lalit also takes to boost his technical abilities. “Certification is really important as it helps people to grow technically and boost their carrier,” he says. “It provides the skills to compete in the market, especially nowadays when there is a high demand for certified IT professionals.”
Similarly, Japanese Azure MVP Akiyoshi Tsuchida is the founder of Japan Microsoft Learn User Group. The community counts 700 members with growing regional branches across Japan and aims to create a space where people can lean on each other for support.
“I wanted to connect with people who use Microsoft Learn and learn together. I guessed that it would be more fun if you share what you achieve,” Akiyoshi says.
“Certifications are important because they are the start of a positive loop. Passing a certification that is in demand will increase your probability of getting a better job and, through your new job, become more skilled. Ultimately, the more skilled you become, the more opportunity you have.”
This “positive loop” is evident with Korean Windows and Devices for IT MVP Soonman Kwon, who has made a great effort in learning technologies to achieve more than 100 certifications. Soonman actively publishes his educational journey with the world via his blog and enjoys expanding his expertise in regard to new technologies and cloud services.
“I still have a lot of curiosity about new products and features,” Soonman says.