Data storage academy to open in Australia

Australia will have its very own Storage Academy in 2008 providing vendor neutral education to end user communities in the region.

Explosive growth in enterprise data is expected to create demand for one million new storage professionals worldwide by 2012.

Organized by the Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA), the series of one-day conferences will begin in March 2008 under the Storage Academy banner.

The aim of the program is to deliver high value, independent education to end users and is based on an academy model that has been deployed elsewhere in the world.

Although content is vendor neutral, IBM, Quantum, and SpectrumData have already confirmed their support for the academy and further sponsors will be announced in coming weeks.

The first conference will be held at the Hilton Hotel in Sydney on March 18, 2008 and will be followed by a second event at the Langham Hotel in Auckland, New Zealand on March 28, 2008.

The theme of the first Storage Academy is virtualization, with sessions dealing with all aspects of virtualization including the server, infrastructure, and disk/tape storage layers.

Delegates will learn about a range of virtualization techniques and how the different methods of virtualization interact with one another.

The Storage Academy program is divided into two conference tracks and an exhibition area. Track One presentations are completely vendor neutral and will be delivered by SNIA representatives while Track Two presentations will be delivered by conference sponsors and will include vendor specific material.

SNIA ANZ board director, Adrian Sharkey, said the academy is the next step in its long term event strategy.

“Delegates who attend this series will benefit from a comprehensive understanding of all aspects of virtualization, delivered by subject matter experts from the industry,” he said.

The academy will fill a gap in training for data storage professionals in Australia.

Another program that will be fully operational in 2008 is training plans announced earlier this year by EMC.

Australia is one of 32 countries participating in EMC’s global initiative to fill a shortage of storage and information management professionals worldwide.

To do this, EMC has partnered with Indian training company NIIT Ltd.

About 25,000 professionals are expected to be trained in India alone over the next three years. EMC will provide curriculum and training for NIIT staff.

The courses offered will include a foundation course, a specialist course and an expert course. Students enrolling in the programs will be certified by EMC although the course content will be vendor-independent.

EMC will launch the training program in China prior to rolling it out in Australia.

Last year EMC announced plans to invest US$500 million in China over the next five years.

This includes a software development center and network storage training center in Shanghai.

Moreover, EMC and the Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA) have also agreed to recognize each other’s certification programs.

SNIA is a not-for-profit global organization made up of more than 420 active member companies plus their worldwide affiliates and close to 7,100 active individuals spanning virtually the entire storage industry.

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