Australia will have its very own Storage Academy in 2008 providing vendor neutral education to end user communities in the region.
Explosive growth in enterprise data is expected to create demand for one million new storage professionals worldwide by 2012.
Organized by the Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA), the series of one-day conferences will begin in March 2008 under the Storage Academy banner.
The aim of the program is to deliver high value, independent education to end users and is based on an academy model that has been deployed elsewhere in the world.
Although content is vendor neutral, IBM, Quantum, and SpectrumData have already confirmed their support for the academy and further sponsors will be announced in coming weeks.
The first conference will be held at the Hilton Hotel in Sydney on March 18, 2008 and will be followed by a second event at the the Langham Hotel in Auckland, New Zealand on March 28, 2008.
The theme of the first Storage Academy is virtualisation, with sessions dealing with all aspects of virtualisation including the server, infrastructure, and disk/tape storage layers.
Delegates will learn about a range of virtualisation techniques and how the different methods of virtualisation interact with one another.
The Storage Academy program is divided into two conference tracks and an exhibition area. Track One presentations are completely vendor neutral and will be delivered by SNIA representatives while Track Two presentations will be delivered by conference sponsors and will include vendor specific material.
SNIA ANZ board director, Adrian Sharkey, said the academy is the next step in its long term event strategy.
"Delegates who attend this series will benefit from a comprehensive understanding of all aspects of virtualisation, delivered by subject matter experts from the industry," he said.
The academy will fill a gap in training for data storage professionals in Australia.
Another program that will be fully operational in 2008 is training plans announced earlier this year by EMC.
Australia is one of 32 countries participating in EMC's global initiative to fill a shortage of storage and information management professionals worldwide.
To do this, EMC has partnered with Indian training company NIIT Ltd.