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On January 20, 2022, Thunderbird School of Global Management, home of the world's No. 1 ranked Master's in Management, and Arizona State University, ranked No. 1 for innovation in the U.S., launched the Francis and Dionne Najafi 100 Million Learners Global Initiative. It is the boldest and most ambitious global education initiative in higher education history.
Through the Francis and Dionne Najafi 100 Million Learners Global Initiative, Thunderbird plans to offer an accredited online global management and entrepreneurship certificate, consisting of five world-class courses in 40 different languages to learners across the globe. Women and young women will account for 70% of the 100 million learners the program will reach worldwide. The certificate will be covered by full scholarships and thus no cost to students because of the philanthropic support undergirding the initiative.
Once the learners in the Global Initiative complete the certificate courses, they will have an almost limitless number of lifelong learning options and alternative educational pathways through Thunderbird and ASU. Providing these opportunities over the long-term ensures that the Global Initiative will continue to pay dividends well into the future, breaking down barriers and opening new educational opportunities for underserved communities worldwide.
The Global Initiative will further advance Thunderbird’s mission to empower and influence global leaders and managers who maximize the benefits of the Fourth Industrial Revolution to advance equitable and sustainable prosperity worldwide. The Fourth Industrial Revolution refers to the current era characterized by a fusion of technologies that is blurring the lines between the physical, digital, and biological spheres. This Global Initiative fundamentally advances Goal 4 of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, far exceeding it in both ambition and boldness.