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UTC Reading student is first in the UK to get professional Microsoft qualifications

A student from UTC Reading has become the first in the country to gain Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) status in the 2016 version of Microsoft Office.

Karl Matthews, Year 13 student at UTC Reading, has become MOS in Microsoft PowerPoint and MOS Expert in Microsoft Word and Microsoft Excel.

Karl commented: “I enjoy completing the MOS exams and they’re highly valuable as it’s something I can put on my CV that most people probably won’t have. It’s great that I’ve been able to make the most of UTC Reading’s direct connections with Microsoft as one of our key industry partners – I feel I wouldn’t have had the same opportunity without that link.”

The MOS programme is a professional qualification from Microsoft that is recognised worldwide. Individuals can become specialists in each element of Microsoft Office and once they have successfully passed all six exams will become a Microsoft Office Master.

Karl is now one exam away from becoming a Microsoft Office Master, having completed his first five exams over the course of two weeks. For many adults to achieve Master status, this often takes 18 months to two years.

Associate industry partner Prodigy Learning, which is the only Certiport Solution Provider in the UK, provides all learning materials and manages the exam process. The company was able to confirm that Karl is the first student in the country to pass the exams.

Andrew Griggs, Country Manager for Prodigy Learning, said: “In today’s global economy the UTC Reading students understand that Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) certification gives them an edge. By becoming MOS Experts they understand that achieving proficiency in these applications will help them in their academic success and entry into the workforce. Huge congratulations to Karl Matthews for becoming the first student in the UK to join a very small elite group. To become a MOS Expert is a tough achievement but to become the first MOS 2016 Expert in the UK is quite incredible."

Daniel Sydes, Vice Principal and Director of Computer Science and Mathematics, commented: “Students at UTC Reading train for the MOS exams in their own time and make the decision themselves to gain these valuable professional qualifications, which we highly encourage.

“We are delighted with Karl’s achievement so far and look forward to supporting more students who decide to take on this challenge and set themselves apart from the crowd, in preparation for entering the workplace.”

UTC Reading is accepting applications from students wishing to join in September 2017. To book onto an open event, visit

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