Spark Education | November 22, 2022
Spark Education Group (Spark Education), a world leader and innovator in interactive live small-class learning, announced a joint venture with Everest Education (Everest), a leading provider of premium offline and online education services in Vietnam, to bring world-class online learning to Vietnam. Since 2018, Spark Education's portfolio of brands have enrolled over half a million students in its programs. The company is backed by top investors including Sequoia, KKR, IDG Capital, GGV Capital, TrustBridge, Carlyle, and more. Everest helps students in Vietnam to gain entrance and succeed in international academic environments, offering Math and English enrichment courses, test prep, college admissions consulting, and private tutoring to students from Grade 1 to Grade 12. This collaboration merges Everest's online business with Spark Education's proprietary technology platform and courseware, localized for the Vietnamese market. The joint venture localizes VISPARK (www.vispark.edu.vn), and launches with its math program based on Singapore Math concepts taught in Vietnamese. This partnership leverages the competitive strengths of both Spark Education and Everest to bring an innovative learning experience to the Vietnamese market, improving the learning experience of local students.Don Le, CEO of Everest Education, shares his vision for the partnership, "Spark Education has invested over $100M into research and development of the VISPARK curriculum, including high-quality animations, interactive courseware, and a proven technology system that has served more than 500,000 students worldwide. We believe that Spark Education's R&D budget is more than the total amount invested by the entire Vietnamese edtech market. By partnering with Spark Education, Everest gains access to the most engaging learning platform with a track record of scaling successfully."
"We are proud to enter into this partnership with Everest Education, who has already established a strong reputation among Vietnamese families for amazing international learning outcomes through their learning centers and online small classes. They will help us localize our global offering for the unique needs of Vietnamese students, and we look forward to empowering K12 students throughout the country together."
Wilson Li, CSO & CFO of Spark Education Group
About Spark Education Group
Founded in 2017, Spark Education Group is headquartered in Singapore. Its portfolio of education brands aims to combine research-based pedagogy with technology to improve the learning experience and outcomes for students. It was recently awarded "Best Interactive Learning Experience" at EdTech Asia in 2022.
CYPHER LEARNING | December 05, 2022
CYPHER LEARNING, a leading provider of learning platforms for schools, universities and organizations around the world, today announced the official launch of its innovative skills development features. This functionality, immediately available to users of both of the company's products, MATRIX LMS for Business and NEO LMS for K-20, helps drive personalized learning journeys, tailored to learners' skills and needs.The advanced features are staples of CYPHER LEARNING's intelligent learning platform (ILP). The company unveiled ILP earlier this year, inviting users to test out the new, intelligent features. STI Education Services Group (STI ESG), one of the largest networks of schools in the Philippines, has helped drive learning success using CYPHER LEARNING's skills development capabilities.As an academic institution, we are dedicated to empowering our teachers with the skills and resources they need to become more effective mentors to their students," said Aisa Q. Hipolito, vice president for academics at STI. "With CYPHER LEARNING's new capabilities, our teachers can improve their own skills and knowledge both of which are essential to supporting students' success. The new functionality benefits students in other ways too, enabling them to explore their interests and create individual learning goals based on their desired careers in the future. Teachers can track the progress of students and provide feedback and intervention, when necessary, to help students achieve their goals.
Educational institutions and businesses can take advantage of the following skills development features available in CYPHER LEARNING platforms to drive mastery of skills:
The ability to tag content and resources with competencies, so learners can achieve goals mapped to their roles, careers, educational standards and more.
Learners receive personalized recommendations, in the form of courses, groups and forums to join, learning paths and more that reflect their goals, background and previous accomplishments.
Instructors can automate daily tasks such as enrolling learners in courses or awarding points and badges to save time and make learning personalized.
Learners and their instructors can track goal progress from the main overview page.
Learners can participate in Q&A forums where they can ask questions and get support on achieving goals.
"Skills development features can also help bridge the gap between academics and industry making students better prepared as they enter the job market,Our platform can be populated with different job competencies from across industries, which educational institutions then map with their courses and curricula. When students set learning goals, the goals and related activities can equip them with the skills they'll need in their careers."
Jenielyn Padernal, CYPHER LEARNING's global EdTech director.
Graham Glass, CEO of CYPHER LEARNING, said: "Whether you're an employee or a student, learning is more useful and enjoyable when it's relevant to you. As we enable learners to set meaningful goals, we're also making it easier for them to achieve them. The learning process should be learner-centric, and at CYPHER LEARNING, we're committed to that approach."
About CYPHER LEARNING
CYPHER LEARNING provides an intelligent learning platform that is empowering schools, businesses and entrepreneurs worldwide to reimagine online education and deliver the best learning experiences. CYPHER LEARNING has solutions for all major e-learning sectors: NEO LMS for K-20, MATRIX LMS for Business, and INDIE LMS for Entrepreneurs. Relied on by millions of users, CYPHER LEARNING supports 50+ languages and has offices worldwide with global headquarters in Plano, Texas.
Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) | November 25, 2022
The Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) has launched a new internship program for students at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) to help bridge the opportunity gap for students of color—offering community development mentorship and experience that gives young people a leg up when entering the workforce. Over the next two years, LISC's National HBCU Talent Development program is placing 40 students in part-time intern positions with local LISC offices and other community development financial institutions (CDFIs). Interns will support a range of initiatives, from marketing to finance to community engagement, while also participating in leadership and national networking events. The program is funded by the Citi Foundation and is specifically designed to address national disparities in internships, with White students significantly more likely to gain paid versus unpaid positions than Black students. The LISC internship pays $25/hour up to $15,000 for the academic year. Talent is everywhere, but opportunity is not," noted Denise Scott, LISC president, who held a virtual "fireside" chat with the initial cohort of interns last month. This program is part of our work to address systemic racial barriers that keep young people from gaining the experience and connections they need to compete for good jobs," she explained. "Through this program, students can earn a strong wage, gain hands-on experience, work with mentors and build a network of contacts and supporters all while supporting valuable community investment activity," she continued. "It's a win for all of us. At the outset, eight HBCUs are participating in the program, with young people from varied backgrounds and experiences applying to participate. Eryn Glover, for instance, is a sophomore marketing major at Johnson C. Smith University (JCSU) in Charlotte, N.C., and one of LISC's first HBCU interns. She is working with the staff at LISC Charlotte to support fundraising, social media and community outreach, helping extend LISC's engagement with the region's philanthropic leaders and supporting valuable collaborations with local partners. I've always known that I wanted to do nonprofit work and put my skills to work to help people," said Glover, a South Jersey native who has spent recent summer breaks working at community-based organizations. She chose JCSU for her education because she wanted to attend an HBCU, benefit from a smaller university, and be close to family that had moved to North Carolina. I feel like I have opportunities here, like the LISC internship, that offer the chance to really get to know professors and mentors, and to also make a difference. I want to work in marketing within the nonprofit space, so this internship really aligns with that," she said. In Washington, D.C., Howard University senior Marsi Hailu is interning with the LISC policy team. Her early projects include mapping gaps in broadband access especially in rural communities and researching the disproportionate impact of climate events on low-income communities of color.I already knew that there is a lack of intergenerational wealth in Black and Brown communities because of historical discrimination," she said of her initial research. "But I guess I didn't realize how much that intersects with geography. It's a lot easier to recover from a disaster if you aren't already living paycheck to paycheck," she added. Hailu, a finance major from Northern Virginia, hopes to pursue a graduate degree in urban development after graduation, with a concentration in affordable housing. She said the LISC internship offers the opportunity to try her hand at different aspects of community development, going well beyond what she might learn in her finance classes. In a lot of places, housing is at the root of inequality," she said, explaining her passion for the work. "As someone who grew up in the area, I see the disparities facing low-income folks. I want to do something about that," she said. In addition to Howard and JCSU, initial HBCU supporters of the program include Edward Waters University (Florida), LeMoyne-Owen College (Tennessee), Lincoln University (Pennsylvania), Morehouse College (Georgia), Simmons College (Kentucky), and Virginia State University (Virginia). Additional HBCUs will be referring students in the months to come. LISC's Scott said the universities are eager to help students identify new opportunities for advancement—particularly given that many of the schools already have existing relationships with LISC, collaborating on local efforts related housing and economic development.
"Here at Johnson C. Smith University, we strive to graduate global citizens who develop a compelling sense of social and civic responsibility for leadership and service,. "LISC's internship program is an excellent way for JCSU students to put this possibility into perspective outside of the classroom. Just as we strive to develop a better world by graduating the best and brightest, LISC does the same by investing in its community to make economic equality a reality," he said.
JCSU President Clarence D. Armbrister
The National HBCU Talent Development program draws on the experience of LISC's nearly three decades of work with AmeriCorps, including the Economic Mobility Corps (EMC) launched in 2020. Through EMC, LISC places national service members in positions that help build the capacity of CDFIs. We have long seen the value in connecting people to community development positions in places that they know and care about," Scott said. "Our HBCU internship program takes that a step further, focusing on gaps in opportunity for students of color, injecting equity into CDFI recruitment efforts and building a community development workforce that reflects the people and places it serves.
LISC is one of the country's largest community development organizations, helping forge vibrant, resilient communities across America. We work with residents and partners to close systemic gaps in health, wealth and opportunity and advance racial equity so that people and places can thrive. Since our founding in 1979, LISC has invested $26.7 billion to create more than 463,000 affordable homes and apartments, develop 78.5 million square feet of retail, community and educational space and help tens of thousands of people find employment and improve their finances.