Shahani Academic & Global Empowerment (SAGE) Foundation, a non-profit trust focussed on skills training, is pleased to announce that JP Morgan will donate Rs 17 crore ($2.25 million) to help train and upskill 4,800 graduates from economically disadvantaged backgrounds. The grant will be utilized to teach new skills in the Banking and Financial Services Industry (BFSI) using advanced technology and innovative concepts with the aim of meeting the evolving needs of employers. This is the second grant that SAGE Foundation has received from J.P. Morgan.

The BFSI sector is investing heavily in technology and the digitalization of its products and services, creating a demand for individuals with specific skills and talents along with practical knowledge of the industry. The Foundation will adopt innovative teaching methods to enable underprivileged youth to get entry-level jobs. This will be achieved through a blended learning model, a combination of on-line and classroom courses that develop students’ communication, sales, and problem-solving skills while providing them with the necessary domain knowledge. The Foundation will collaborate with its training arm Smart Institute for skills training.

Dr. Akhil Shahani, Managing Director, Shahani Group, said, “With the demand for work-ready professionals with deep industry knowledge on the rise, it is imperative that educational institutions alter their approach and provide students with real and tangible skills that are relevant to the workforce of today. Against the current economic environment, this is even more critical. JP Morgan is a leading global financial services firm and receiving a grant for the second time from it has uplifted our resolve to ensure a change in the education sector. The funds will facilitate our goal of helping students reach their full potential and finding jobs in the banking sector.”

Maneesha Chadha, Head of Philanthropy for India, JP Morgan, said, “Businesses across sectors are facing challenges in finding and employing skilled talent. This program will help bridge the gap between employee skills and employer needs by giving underprivileged students an opportunity to acquire the appropriate training for the right skills that are needed to build careers. We look forward to high-yielding results.”

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