Digital Assemblies, Code Clubs,
Tech Jams & Work Experience
Tech companies of Cornwall
reaching out to the employees of the future
Software Cornwall represents nearly 50 companies operating in Cornwall today. In the future these companies will require talented staff to fill available positions within their organisations. Unfortunately there is not a sustainable influx of students on computing courses in Cornwall or the UK to meet the demand. It is part of the role of Software Cornwall to showcase local businesses to up and coming youngsters and to encourage them to dip their toes into our world of technology.
Finding New Employees
Currently a lot of advertised positions are being filled by individuals from elsewhere in the country and around the world. CEOs have even travelled abroad to encourage foreign talent to join them in Cornwall. These organisations would rather local children are shown that right around them is an exciting and well paid career path.
More Diversity Required
There is a need also to highlight that coding needs to be an inclusive career as everyone benefits from its uses. 50% of users, for instance, are women but only around 15% are programmers. Programmers need to be from a diverse spectrum of the population if their work is going to benefit everyone. Technology is used not only where children currently expect it, such as websites or games, but also in the medical fields, sports, robotics, music and arts. It’s likely that children at school now will be working in careers that currently do not even exist.
The Software Cornwall Education Outreach aim is to bring to every secondary school pupil the opportunity to try out computer coding, show them projects local businesses are working on and meet professionals working in the county right now. To do this we are going to:
- Provide a digital career assembly to every pupil in every secondary school year.
- Assist in setting up a Code Club in every secondary school.
- Give pupils an opportunity to have digital work experience.
- Run Tech Jams open to all at the weekends for those wanting even more participation.
- Provide Cornwall Digital Career posters for the schools to display.
The assemblies will showcase the Cornwall Software Industry highlighting the work being done. We will show the benefits of working in the technology industry in Cornwall. Briefly demonstrate uses of computer programming that maybe have not been seen before to engage pupils currently not aware of software uses.
Hands On Encouragement
Whenever possible we will set up a mini Tech Jams during the assembly visit for interested pupils to come along, try out some coding on our equipment and learn more about digital careers in Cornwall.
We will assist, in those schools needing them, the foundation of a Code Club. These Clubs will be a place where the children can develop their interest and confidence in coding. They have a less structured atmosphere compared to the classroom and encourage children to try out programming skills and develop their own ideas from the Code Club exercises.
Code Clubs should be used as an opportunity to involve feeder primary school pupils experiencing secondary school life. Pupils at the club will also benefit from assisting primary school pupils in developing their skills. These pupils will encourage junior learners and also develop their own skills in passing on programming knowledge and experience. It will also promote the big school life to those soon to choose their next educational establishment.
Mission to Mars
For those pupils keen to try some work experience in the software industry there is our Mission to Mars. These are mentored by Cornish industry professionals and provide pupils with real business contact. The rovers, pictured here, need to be instructed to negotiate their terrain avoiding obstacles and get to a home beacon. Not as easy as it sounds as each rover has it’s own foibles and does not necessarily follow commands precisely. Just like the real world where nothing is perfect. The experience will hopefully encourage these pupils to further consider a future career in the tech sector in Cornwall.
Tech Jams Every Month
Outside the school environment Software Cornwall runs Tech Jams every month. Anyone is welcome to come along, for free, and try their hands at coding, meet other coders and see what others are producing.