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The Study Hall

Cisco and Instructure Team Up to Service 1 Million Students

Wow! LMSs have come a long way!  Cisco Networking Academy had a vision for a network-based LMS in 1997, when we were founded. We had to build our own custom LMS, because there were no options in the market. Today at InstructureCon, I was amazed to see not only how far the technology has come, but how broadly the vision of LMS and education assisted by networking technology has gained such broad acceptance!

I am so excited to share with the Canvas community that Cisco Networking Academy will be incorporating Canvas as the LMS portion of our new platform, Cisco NetSpace, which we will announce and unveil at the NetAcad Global Conference on this coming Monday.

At InstructureCon, I am highlighting how Technology, Engineering and Math (TEM) education is critical. I am also demonstrating the power of collaboration by sharing the story of the Cisco Networking Academy.

Almost 15 years ago, light years in technology innovation, Cisco engineers began to work with schools to access the Internet. The engineers built and installed networks in their local schools, believing in the promise of connection. But they discovered that the schools couldn’t maintain the network:  It was difficult to find individuals with networking skills.

That is how Cisco Networking Academy was born, with a mission to make ICT knowledge and skills available to students around the world, regardless of their economic and social situation. What started out in seven states in the United States has now grown into the world’s largest classroom, with over 1 million students per year in over 165 countries. Amazing!!!!

Cisco has established a global 'classroom'.
Cisco has established a global "classroom".

Today, more than 10,000 high schools, community colleges, universities and other non-profit organizations participate in the Cisco Networking Academy, a public-private partnership between Cisco and schools/universities around the globe. This global “classroom” provides knowledge in ICT, from basic PC and software to complex routing and switching protocols, but also 21 century skills that help students excel in today’s networked economy. 

Every day, NetAcad shows that when you combine the power of human and technology networks, you can multiply your impact in amazing ways!  I am excited about the future of the Cisco Networking Academy and all that it promises for students around the world. There are so many inspiring student success stories from the program:  check them out at

And as I’ve said to all the educators here at InstructureCon, GET INVOLVED!  PROMOTE Technology, Engineering, and Math in your local schools, community colleges and universities, in whatever way you can. It is critical to providing a future for our students, our communities and our countries in today’s competitive networked economy. You, working with your networks (both technical and human) can make a HUGE impact on people and the communities where they live.  

Let’s get out there and create opportunity through great education!

For information on Cisco’s Corporate Social Responsibility programs, visit here.

Amy Christen, VP of Corporate Affairs at Cisco