AWS Educate serves as a path for younger students to understand and get excited about the capabilities of the cloud, namely Amazon’s own AWS cloud. At AWS’s Re:Invent conference in last week, AWS announced the company is expanding its cloud education initiative to students ages 14-17.

Obviously, AWS is trying to create customer loyalty early on. Apple did that in the 1980s through heavy discounts and outright gifts to K-12 school students of their respective computers. This was such as influence that, back in my 20s when I was working on PCs and LANs, I noticed a huge bias from students and teachers for using Apple Macs. As a result of spending millions on this program, I’m sure that Apple made billions in shifting customer loyalty to Apple.

But there’s another reason Amazon is promoting its cloud to high-schoolers. Cloud is an essential skill for IT, as well as other professsions. But universities do a poor job in educating students about it. In addition to promoting its own AWS cloud, Amazon is trying to remediate that education gap, not only to help populate a future employee pipeline but to populate businesses with cloud-savvy—and cloud-oriented—employees once these students get out of school

Although there are a great deal of cloud computing courses in course catalogs at colleges and universities, many educational institutions are slow to offer courses in the cloud computing field, according to a new report from Clutch, a research firm.