On January 20, 2022, Thunderbird School of Global Management (Thunderbird), home of the world’s No. 1 ranked Master’s in Management, and Arizona State University (ASU), ranked No. 1 for innovation in the U.S., launched the Francis and Dionne Najafi 100 Million Learners Global Initiative. This initiative aims to offer online, global education from these world-class accredited institutions in 40 different languages to learners across the globe, at absolutely no cost to the learner. Women and young women will account for 70% of the 100 million learners that the program will reach worldwide.

The Global Initiative will further advance Thunderbird’s mission to empower and influence global leaders and managers who maximize the benefits of the Fourth Industrial Revolution to advance equitable and sustainable prosperity worldwide.

The Global Initiative offers three pathways to learners depending on their current education levels:

1) Foundational program: Content for learners with any level of education.

2) Intermediate program: Content at the high school or undergraduate education level.

3) Advanced courses: Content at the graduate education level.

Our lives were transformed by our experience at Thunderbird and we wanted to extend that same transformative experience to people around the world who do not have the opportunity to access this world-class education.”

F. Francis Najafi ’77 


Foundational courses

For learners with any level of education.

Intermediate courses

For learners with high school or undergraduate education.

Thunderbird Undergraduate student smiling at the camera

Principles of Global Management

Coming Soon
Image of a Bachelor of Global Management student smiling in front of a group of diverse students talking in the new Global Headquarters.

Principles of Global Accounting

Coming Soon
Thunderbird student Grecia Cubillas sits with her laptop at global headquarters

Principles of Global Marketing

Coming Soon
Thunderbird undergraduate student works on his laptop from a balcony at global headquarters

Big Data in the Global Economy

Coming Soon
Image of a Bachelor of Science in International Trade student in a suit smiling in the Asian Heritage lounge at the Thunderbird Global Headquarters.

Global Entrepreneurship

Coming Soon

Advanced courses

Courses for learners with undergraduate or graduate education. 

A woman looks at data on screens in front of her

Data Analytics & Digital Transformation

Coming Soon
Thunderbird graduate students interacts with tabletop computers at global headquarters

Customer Experience & Digital Marketing

Coming Soon
Image of a Thunderbird student writing on a board with post it notes during a meeting

Global Accounting: Managing by the Numbers

Coming Soon

Sign-up to receive a notification once courses are available in your desired language.

100 ML Journey
Participants in 100 Million Learners can pre-register at www.100millionlearners.org. Once their desired course and language in available they must register for it on the same site which will create a Canvas account where they can take the course. For each course successfully completed, learners will earn a digital badge from Badgr. Learners can take the courses in any order they desire and have one year to complete from the day they register. Learners who successfully complete all 5 courses will earn a Thunderbird Executive Education Certificate. Those interested can apply for an accredited certificate from ASU/Thunderbird as long as they have achieved a B+ or better in each of the five courses. If approved, the 15-credit certificate can be used to transfer to another institution, pursue a degree at ASU/Thunderbird, or elsewhere. Learners who take any of the courses can choose to pursue other lifelong learning opportunities at ASU/Thunderbird or use their digital credentials to pursue new professional opportunities.


  • Arabic
  • Bengali
  • Burmese
  • Czech
  • Dutch
  • English
  • Farsi
  • French
  • German
  • Gujarati
  • Hausa

  • Hindi
  • Hungarian
  • Bahasa (Indonesia)
  • Italian
  • Japanese
  • Javanese
  • Kazakh
  • Kinyarwanda
  • Korean
  • Malay

  • Mandarin Chinese (S)
  • Mandarin Chinese (T)
  • Polish
  • Portuguese
  • Punjabi
  • Romanian
  • Russian
  • Slovak
  • Spanish
  • Swahili

  • Swedish
  • Tagalog
  • Thai
  • Turkish
  • Ukrainian
  • Urdu
  • Uzbek
  • Vietnamese
  • Yoruba
  • Zulu

The Need

In the new global economy, where technology has displaced so many workers, obtaining a future ready skillset is a necessity for both personal and professional opportunities. Yet too many of the world’s learners lack access to quality education and 21st century skillsets, a problem that will only be exacerbated in the coming years. 

The demand for higher education is projected to grow from approximately 222,000,000 in 2020 to more than 470,000,000 in 2035. In order to meet that demand, the world would have to build eight universities that each serve 40,000 students every week for the next 15 years. In addition, 90% of the world’s university students do not have access to the resources or recognition of top-ranked universities. In addition, the demand for skillsets needed to succeed in the new economy from members at the base of the economic pyramid, such as women entrepreneurs, is projected to exceed another 2-3 billion people.


Image of the 100 Million Learners announcement in the Global Forum as seen from above

Partner with us

A key ingredient for the success of the 100M Learners Initiative is collaboration with partnerships at the global, regional, and national levels who can help us reach 100 million learners around the world. These partners will help us reach their networks of learners in key markets that we have identified as a priority, deploy the courses and continuously provide feedback on ways to improve them and leverage their networks in support of our learners. 

Support this initiative

A gift to the Francis and Dionne Najafi 100 Million Learners Global Initiative will enable learners across the world to receive a world-class global management education at no cost. Your support will provide learning experiences to students who can utilize entrepreneurship and management skills to fight poverty and improve living conditions in their communities. Most importantly, your donation will promote Thunderbird's vision of an equitable and inclusive world by addressing the great disparity in educational access globally. Thank you for your consideration and support. 

100ML Nairobi Event Group Picture