Sometimes the best way to say you’re serious about training and certification is by proving it.

And that is, in part, the idea behind Microsoft’s first-ever Web-based reality show -- Be the next Microsoft Employee.

Today we revealed the first contestant—Alex Aguilar from Phoenix, Arizona. We’ll be announcing the rest over the next 2 weeks. And then, beginning July 24, we will get to watch them battle it out to become the next Microsoft employee.

To me, this proves that Microsoft really cares about helping people get the right training and certification needed in today’s highly competitive IT industry. And this is only one of the ways we’re doing it. It’s easy to lose track of some of the truly incredible things that are happening around here!

For example, last week we announced the new Microsoft Certified Solution Developer (MCSD) credentials. This week, we’re at TechEd in Orlando. And all the while, we’re celebrating our 20th anniversary.

It’s an exciting time to be part of the Microsoft community. And in the case of Be the Next Microsoft Employee, we get the added bonus of getting entertained as well.

I, for one, can’t wait to see which of the contestants will join Microsoft as a SQL specialist. What I do know, is that Microsoft Training and Certification has helped these contestants gain critical skills to advance their careers and gain the experience needed to prepare for this challenge.

Come July 24, you’ll know where to find me—glued to the screen for the premiere, popcorn in hand.

I hope you’ll join me.