If you’ve ever created and worked on a complicated spreadsheet and thought to yourself, “Damn, I’m an Excel CHAMPION,” then you might be interested to know that an actual World Championship competition for Excel spreadsheets exists and that the winner can win thousands of dollars. Looks like your proficiency in the office could pay off bigtime outside of it too! Who knew?
Pretty much everyone knows how to make and use spreadsheets these days. Back in the day, knowing Microsoft Excel was a specialty skill while nowadays, it’s pretty much expected. Maybe you’ve moved over to Google Sheets for ease, but nevertheless, if you work in an office, spreadsheets probably come easy to you. However, there’s a difference between proficiency and excellence. Which side do you fall on?
The Microsoft Office Specialist World Championship is for the best of the best. It’s a global competition that tests contestants’ ability to navigate Microsoft Office Word, Excel, and PowerPoint to the highest level. Simply knowing how to copy/paste or create a sum isn’t enough here – the judges are looking for real knowledge of their programs.
The competition is only open to young people. If this sounds too good to be true, it’s worth noting that there are some limits on eligibility. You’ll need to be between the ages of 13 and 21 and enrolled in an approved, degree-seeking academic institution to be able to enter, so if this doesn’t apply to you, you’ll have to sit this one out.
Those who do well in the World Championship stand to make a pretty penny. The winner of the competition will go home with $7,500 prize money, not to mention a trophy, medal, certificate, AND lots of other fun Microsoft products. However, you don’t have to be #1 to get a prize. The second place winner gets $3,500 and a medal and certificate, while the third place winner gets $1,500 and the medal and certificate too. Pretty sweet!
So many people sign up to this competition. In 2019, for instance, they had more than 850,000 applicants from more than 119 countries. That number was pared down to only 161 students, all of whom had fire in their bellies when it came to taking home the grand prize. “It’s a huge accomplishment. Most of us in an office think that we know how to use Excel. These kids really know,” said Aaron Osmond, general manager of Certiport, the company behind the competition.
If you’d like to enter the competition this year, you can find out more info HERE.
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