Council and partners help students find their future in IT
The event “Your Future in IT?” is a partnership between The Highland Council, e-skills Scotland, and the business community, supported by the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI), Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE).
Councillor Alasdair Christie, Chair of The Highland Council’s Adult and Children’s Services Committee said: “Our Education Service organised the conference to help raise awareness among our young people of routes into IT as a potential career area. With the expectation that opportunities in IT will grow in the coming years, their experience at the conference will hopefully enable the pupils to make the most of current and future IT vacancies for young apprentices and graduates in the Highland area.”
Partners in the event, UHI and HIE helped to promote the event as part of the wider development of strategic thinking in Highland around the IT sector.
The event - which was hosted by Inverness College UHI in their Learning Centre - attracted young people from as far apart as Tain and Fort Augustus, most of whom will be considering a career in the IT sector as an option, either following an apprentice or graduate route.
Conference activities which the S4-S6 pupils took part in were largely business-led. The major companies that participated in the event were Alchemy Plus, BT, Capgemini and Fujitsu. The young people gained an overview of the IT sector in Scotland; were given a short hands-on project to work on; learned from a recent young graduate or apprentice what constitutes a typical work day; tackled some standard interview questions and got advice for interviews.
Joyce MacLennan, Head of Financial and Business Services at Highlands and Islands Enterprise, said: "HIE is delighted to support the Your Future in IT event during Make Young People Your Business Week. Events like this are a practical example of industry and education working together - a key theme of the Skills Investment Plan for Scotland's ICT and Digital Technologies sectors launched in Edinburgh on Tuesday by the First Minister.
"HIE is keen to work with industry and education partners to raise awareness of career and study opportunities for young people across the Highlands and Islands. Together we aim to reach more young people, particularly through schools, learning providers and the University of the Highlands and Islands, to develop a skilled future workforce which will sustain current economic growth and attract additional inward investment to the area.”
Pupils attending the conference were from Dingwall, Inverness Royal, Millburn, Invergordon, Nairn, Kilchuimen, Fortrose and Tain Royal Academies and Kingussie High School.