Microsoft Academia Accelerator reinforces the need to integrate academia and the IT industry

Students showcase innovative AI technology solutions of the future



Hyderabad, May 15, 2018: Microsoft India today hosted AXLE 2018, a Microsoft and academia collaboration showcase. For the past five years, Microsoft has been working closely with the students and faculty of some of India’s top colleges through the Microsoft Academia Accelerator program. This day-long celebration of the achievements of the academic year, presented an interesting line up of speaker sessions and panel discussions from Microsoft and faculty. It also showcased 16 top engineering projects from across campus hackathons conducted over the year.

Academia Accelerator is one of Microsoft’s most comprehensive campus engagement programs aimed at building a deep, long-term association between industry and academia in India and reiterates the company’s mission to enable people to realize their full potential. Students displayed solutions based on popular technologies like Artificial Intelligence and Augmented Reality at the showcase held at Microsoft campus in Hyderabad. Learning, accessibility and road safety were amongst some of the favored themes which were showcased. The shortlist of projects was a result of a yearlong engagement where more than 2000+ students participated across 16 colleges and built over 350 projects.

Building on the close association during the year, faculty and senior leadership of Microsoft came together to discuss topics such as Artificial Intelligence, machine learning, and most importantly, the need for the IT industry and academia to work together to fuel innovation.


“Academia Accelerator aims to provide insights to students about important technology trends and practices and also adding the layer of cutting-edge industry know-how to the existing Computer Science curriculum, thereby”. said Anil Bhansali, Managing Director, Microsoft India (R&D) Private Ltd.  “The success of this program is testament to the great engineering talent we have in India. We have seen significant uptake for the Academia Accelerator program in the last five years as students recognize the importance of understanding technology trends and undergoing practical training sessions during their formative years,” he added.  

As with every year, the program stressed the concepts of teamwork and collaboration as well as multi-disciplinary focus that took students beyond pure technology or code into other equally important determinants of success, such as user experience, design, customer value propositions.

Microsoft is committed to fostering innovation and creating a real impact on communities. In line with this, the key focus is on empowering students to think innovatively to craft solutions for real time challenges. Initiatives such as the Microsoft Academia Accelerator represent a tremendous learning opportunity for students. In addition to skills and training that launch incredible careers, students receive unparalleled hands-on experience, guidance and mentorship from industry luminaries, opening doors to a future as an entrepreneur, innovator or technologist. Through these programs, students are empowered to dream big, build creatively, learn through competition and boldly bring their ideas to life as they gain lifelong career skills throughout their journey.

About Academia Accelerator

This exclusive program enables Microsoft’s engagement with campuses through enrichment of Computer Science course curriculum and driving student innovation. Supporting Computer Science faculty in curriculum development and delivery- is done through participation in tech boot camps, guest lectures, adjunct faculty, curriculum reviews & development, leadership talks, technology workshops, joint research papers and mentoring student projects. Fostering student innovation and entrepreneurship on campus through a series of hackathons which give students at the partnering campuses an opportunity to work collaboratively in team environments to build modern, real-world applications that leverage the latest Microsoft platforms including Mobile and Cloud, and a series of workshops that span a wide spectrum of topics relevant to the modern-day high technology industry.


About Microsoft India

Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”@microsoft) enables digital transformation for the era of an intelligent cloud and an intelligent edge. Its mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more. Microsoft set up its India operations in 1990. Today, Microsoft entities in India have over 8,000 employees, engaged in sales and marketing, research and development and customer services and support, across 11 Indian cities – Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Chennai, New Delhi, Gurugram, Noida, Hyderabad, Kochi, Kolkata, Mumbai and Pune. Microsoft offers its global cloud services from local datacenters to accelerate digital transformation across Indian start-ups, businesses, and government agencies. In 2016, Microsoft opened one of its eight Cyber Security Engagement Centers in the country, to address security needs of both public and private sectors.