A First for Plymouth’s Digital Defence Training

08 January 2018 | Media, Games & Computing

Last year, the UK Government announced a £1.9billion investment in the country’s cyber security plan to develop and defend our digital nation.

The Government’s Cyber Security Skills Strategy has also recognised higher and degree-level Apprenticeships as an effective way to prepare young people and retrain those looking to upskill or change to a career in the cyber security profession.

In response to this, City College in partnership with the University of Plymouth, has developed the Digital Technology Solutions degree-level Apprenticeship. The first of its kind in the City, this programme was specifically designed with the help of employers to meet changing sector requirements. As our industries increasingly rely on new technologies, the need for employees with digital skills is on the rise.
The first cohort of apprentices started their course this September.
Clair Nicholls, 37, enrolled on the Digital Technology Skills Degree Apprenticeship wanting to upskill after working at Cornwall Council for a number of years. She said: “I actually started my job at Cornwall Council as an apprentice and have worked there ever since. I have always wanted to do a degree, but between work and raising a family it never seemed like the right time. When the Digital Technology Solutions Apprenticeship was offered through work, I felt this was the perfect opportunity. With the programme being funded by the Council, I am finally able to get the qualification I’ve always wanted. This Apprenticeship will definitely enhance my knowledge and make me a more rounded employee.”

“Degree Apprenticeships offer huge potential for filling the local digital skills gap,” said Martin Stanton, Lecturer in Computing Systems and Software Design at City College. “They present employers with the opportunity to invest in the future by training the next generation of workers to meet their business needs.

“Employers already understand the value of a graduate; however, some lack the vital experience and practical skills needed in industry. Employing a degree apprentice offers the best of both worlds – they receive a high-level of education all while gaining the relevant workplace expertise.

“I see Degree Apprenticeships as valuable opportunities for both students and employers – students get a head start in their chosen profession and stand out from the crowd in the large pool of graduates, while employers gain a highly-qualified employee who knows the company inside and out.”

The four-year programme will provide a unique and flexible alternative to traditional university study. Students will be earning a wage while studying for a full Honours Degree and learning all of the practical skills they will need to become a highly competent expert in the field of digital technology. The Apprenticeship offers core units with the option to branch out into four specific pathways which include: cyber security analyst, IT consultant, network engineer and software engineer.

Those interested in taking the next step in their career or any of the opportunities available at the College can find out more at their Open Day on Saturday 3 February, 10.00am to 1.00pm at Kings Road. Visit www.cityplym.ac.uk/events or call 01752 305300 for more information.

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