07/20/11 — Spring Creek graduate one of five winners in national Microsoft Office contest

View Archive

Spring Creek graduate one of five winners in national Microsoft Office contest

By Phyllis Moore
Published in News on July 20, 2011 1:46 PM

Full Size

Miranda Hill

A recent Spring Creek High School graduate is one of five winners in a national Microsoft competition.

Miranda Hill, recently named champion in the 2011 Certiport Microsoft Word-2010 event, will compete later this month in the worldwide competition on Microsoft Office, to be held in San Diego, Calif. She will compete against finalists from 70 countries in that category.

She competed in the first round this spring as part of the school's Microsoft Academy. The competition required applicants to complete an online exam to demonstrate proficiency on Microsoft Office-2007 and 2010 programs, skills included as part of the Academy's curriculum.

Applicants were allowed multiple attempts to complete exams for each program. Of the estimated 72,000 applicants who competed, those with the highest scores and the quickest times of completion were selected to represent the country in the world competition.

"When I first signed up for the Microsoft technology course at Spring Creek, I did not think technology was my strong point," Ms. Hill said. "However, I discovered that I loved the course and especially excelled in using Microsoft Word. Earning certification and becoming a finalist is an incredible resume and confidence booster."

During the Microsoft Academy, Ms. Hill earned a Microsoft Office Specialist, or MOS, certification. The certifications exist primarily to meet the increasing demand for Microsoft Office proficiency among its users. Students who passed a qualifying exam and attend an approved, degree-seeking academic institution were eligible to participated in the national competition.

Officials said Ms. Hill outperformed her peers by demonstrating proficiency utilizing Microsoft Word with a perfect exam score and a completion time well below the allotted exam time.

"Although business isn't always the career interest of my students, earning industry-recognized certifications through the Microsoft IT Academy is something that has piqued interest in the student population at Spring Creek," said Jennifer Tyndall, business teacher at Spring Creek. "Miranda set the example as the first student at Spring Creek to earn Microsoft certification, and I knew she had an aptitude for technology.

"She was very driven and in addition to becoming a finalist for Microsoft Word 2010, she has earned several other certifications."

By having the top score and fastest time in her category, Ms. Hill will be awarded a $5,000 scholarship, a medal of achievement, a certificate of recognition and an all-expense-paid trip to the world competition.

Two other Spring Creek students also placed in the national Certiport competition, officials said. Amber Norris earned second place and Toni Clemons earned third place. Both competed in the Microsoft Word-2010 category.