The first wave of beneficiaries of a Bill Gates-inspired initiative to provide computer training for 100,000 Scots by 2010 has graduated.
Earlier this year, Mr Gates, the founder of Microsoft, pledged to supply the software and training needed to give thousands of Scots the basic IT skills to get into work or back into education.
Three groups of students have received certificates and prizes at a "graduation" ceremony held at Edinburgh City Chambers having come through the recently-established Edinburgh Community Technology Academy, based at Wester Hailes on the outskirts of the city. The scheme also involves Edinburgh Chamber of Commerce, the Scottish University for Industry, and Randstad Work Solutions.
Elena Bonfiglioli of Microsoft said: "We are on target in Scotland. The evidence is compelling that ICT training provides a ticket into employment, combined with other soft interpersonal skills, such as how to interface with the customer."