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Oracle to give higher ed $58 million

The company will announce a program on Monday to provide universities with $58 million worth of database tools and training.

Oracle will announce a program on Monday to provide universities with $58 million worth of database tools and training.

Called the Oracle Academic Initiative, the program will donate versions 7.3 and 8.0 of the Oracle databases, teacher training, access to the complement of Oracle's education classes, and technical support to participating universities, said a source close to the company.

Oracle president Ray Lane will unveil the program, considered one of his "pet projects." Many high-tech companies, including Oracle, increasingly are playing a role in helping to educate the workforce. Such deals also helps build "mindshare" for their products.

The Oracle Academic Initiative will focus on providing vocational training to students. Universities in the program include San Francisco State University, Northern Arizona University, Santa Barbara City College, the University of Houston, and the University of Montana system.

Oracle placed a $1 million value on the support and materials given to a participating university, and 58 universities will be targeted for the program.