In December 2020, Amazon Web Services (AWS) committed to investing hundreds of millions of dollars to provide free cloud computing skills training to 29 million people worldwide by 2025. More than a year ahead of schedule, AWS has surpassed this ambitious goal, having helped more than 31 million learners across 200 countries and territories build their cloud skills through its free training initiatives. This milestone represents AWS's relentless drive to democratize access to cloud careers and uplift communities worldwide.
"We have long believed in the transformative power of education and skills training to change lives,” said Maureen Lonergan, VP of AWS Training and Certification. “Exceeding our goal of providing free training to 29 million learners ahead of our target is incredible—and we’re just getting started. I am personally so excited about the millions of people, from all walks of life, who have invested in themselves to build or advance their career in cloud. Together, with our AWS Partners, we will continue to train tens of millions of learners across the world in the AWS Cloud and help them prepare for in-demand jobs.”
AWS has purposefully designed a scalable portfolio of free offerings to meet the needs of a wide range of learners of all skill levels—from AWS re/Start’s workforce development training programs for unemployed and underemployed people, to AWS Skills Centers’ in-person learning centers with immersive exhibits that bring cloud computing to life. AWS also offers digital, self-paced trainings and learning plans through AWS Skill Builder and AWS Educate, our online learning centers.
To meet our 29 million goal, AWS launched and scaled several free, diverse training initiatives, such as:
    The impact of these efforts has been felt across the globe by learners of all backgrounds:
    Through these global training initiatives, we’ve gained valuable insights into the content and types of training that are resonating with learners. Role-based courses like our Cloud Practitioner, Solutions Architect, Developer, and Data Analytics trainings consistently top the popularity charts—proof that career development is a key motivator. We’ve also learned that people want to have fun while learning. AWS Cloud Quest: Cloud Practitioner is our most played game-based learning role and is the fourth most consumed training on AWS Skill Builder. As artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) emerge as a game-changing technology, demand for related training has skyrocketed. Some of our most popular AI/ML courses are Amazon Bedrock Getting Started, Introduction to Generative AI - Art of Possible, Amazon Q Business Getting Started, and Amazon Q Introduction.

    Continued investment in free cloud computing and AI skills training

    Surpassing our 29 million milestone is just the beginning: Amazon continues to invest in providing free and low-cost cloud computing and AI skills training for people of all backgrounds and skill levels. The goal is to build an inclusive pipeline of diverse, skilled talent worldwide that is prepared for the AI-enabled future of work.
    As part of Amazon’s recently announced “AI Ready” initiative to provide free AI skills training to 2 million people globally by 2025, we’ve introduced new free courses to help learners prepare for AI-enabled jobs:
    Hands typing on laptop keyboard displaying SimuLearn
    In addition to technical AI skills, we’re also helping people develop essential soft skills, such as communication and problem-solving, that are critical yet challenging to hone through traditional training methods. Today, we launched AWS SimuLearn, powered by Amazon Bedrock, which provides an immersive learning experience that pairs generative AI-powered simulations with hands-on training to help people translate business problems into technical solutions. Learners engage in interactive conversations with virtual customers to gather requirements, propose solutions, receive contextual feedback, and optimize architectures—just like real customer engagements.
    “The AWS SimuLearn client engagement and solution builder really put me in the shoes of an AWS Solutions Architect. Communicating with 'Dr. Newton' and the customer to determine requirements was super realistic. The seamless navigation and quick provisioning made the learning experience smooth and enjoyable."

    Barnaby Baron

    tech lead at DXC
    To get started with AI-powered training, explore the free 12 Cloud Practitioner assignments on AWS SimuLearn. Check out our collection of game-based learning offerings, including the new generative AI role for AWS Cloud Quest, and more than 100 AI/ML courses and learning resources on AWS Skill Builder and AWS Educate.