Free Office 365 ProPlus for Students
Starting December 1, Microsoft is offering free Office 365 ProPlus to students. According to Microsoft Vice President of Worldwide Education Mr. Anthony Salcito. Here’s a quote from his blog.
“I’m thrilled to announce a new benefit designed to empower students worldwide with the technological skills they need to compete in today’s (and tomorrow’s) workforce: it’s called Student Advantage.
Beginning Dec. 1, any academic institution that licenses Office for staff and faculty can provide Office 365 ProPlus for students at no additional cost. Student Advantage makes it easy for qualifying institutions to provide students with the latest version of full Office at school and at home. Combined with Office 365 for Education plan A2, which is free for schools, Student Advantage gives students access to the same set of world-class productivity tools and services used by Fortune 500 companies all over the world.”
Mr. Salcito went on to say “Microsoft and IDC recently conducted a study to identify the skills and competencies highly valued by employers – now and through 2020 – so we can help graduate well-prepared students. IDC scanned 14.6 million job postings from April to September 2013 and identified the top 60 positions with the highest growth and salary potential, along with the 20 most common skills that are both important and widely required across positions. The study found that while most of these skills are “soft skills,” there are also some technologies, or “hard skills,” on this list. For instance, oral and written communications was listed as the number-one most sought-after skill, with detail orientation being number two. Proficiency with Microsoft Office was number three. (Interestingly, PowerPoint and Word were called out individually as 11 and 13 on the list, respectively.)”
Visit Office 365 Education site if you want to learn more. This Web site has lots of useful information. By the way, all Office 365 Education plans (A plans) include the following:
|Email and calendars||Use business-class email through a rich and familiar Outlook experience you can access from your desktop1 or from a web browser using Outlook Web App. Get a 50 GB mailbox per user and send attachments up to 25 MB. Use your own domain name.|
|Web conferencing||Host online meetings with audio and video using one-click screen sharing, HD video conferencing, and virtual whiteboard. Excellent for distance learning.|
|Instant messaging||Connect with others via instant message and let people know your availability with your online status.|
|File storage and sharing||SkyDrive Pro gives users 25 GB of personal storage that syncs with their PC for offline access. Easily share documents with others through Office or SharePoint.|
|Team sites||Work together on projects, in study groups, or in clubs with team sites that help keep related documents, notes, tasks, and conversations organized together. Up to 300 subsites.|
|Office Web Apps||Create and edit2 Word, OneNote, PowerPoint, and Excel documents from any modern browser.|
|Mobility||Sync email, calendar, and contacts; access SharePoint sites; view and edit Office documents with Office Web Apps using a browser on Windows Phone, iOS, and Android devices.|
|Apps for Office and SharePoint||New third-party and customer-developed apps work with Office and SharePoint to bring web services right into your documents and sites.|
|Administration||The admin portal provides IT detailed configuration options for your services, either from an online portal or through automated management with PowerShell commands.|
|Reliability||Get peace of mind knowing your services are available with a guaranteed 99.9% uptime, financially backed service level agreement (SLA).|
|Security||Cutting-edge security practices with five layers of security and proactive monitoring help keep your data safe.
Watch an overview of Office 365 security.
|Privacy||Your data belongs to you. Microsoft does not scan emails or documents for advertising purposes.|
|Up to date||No need to pay for version upgrades; updates are included in your subscription. New features are rolled out to Office 365 customers in an IT-configurable experience.|
|Support||24/7 phone support for all IT issues. For less urgent issues, you can make service requests directly through the admin portal.|
1Plans that do not include the desktop version of Office work with the latest version of Outlook, Outlook 2010, Outlook 2007 (with slightly limited functionality), Outlook 2011 for Mac, and Outlook 2008 for Mac.
2Editing included in select plans only.