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31 January 2017

Wiltshire College marks Safer Internet Day

The Student Engagement and Learning Technology team came together at Trowbridge, Chippenham, Lackham and Salisbury on Tuesday 7th February to help promote the safe, responsible and positive use of digital technology to young people through online interactive quizzes and activities.

This years’ theme was ‘Be the change: unite for a better internet' and students also joined in the social media #giveasmile and #shareaheart campaigns to offer their ideas for a better internet and sharing what they find positive about being online.

Jodie Chidlow, aged 17, who is Vice President of the Student Union at the Trowbridge campus, said: “There can be many risks on the internet but when you are young and certainly when you first start using it, you aren’t aware of those risks and dangers.

“Everything can be done so quickly and instantly and people don’t always think about the consequence of putting something online, particularly social media.

“I always find Twitter really positive as I think it is easier to block people you might not want to be in contact with and I also find it safer as people cannot directly get in touch with you so easily.

“As the vice president I think it is a great thing that the college is promoting safer internet day and it definitely got students talking, not just about the risks but the positive aspects too.”

Level 1 Carpentry student Jordan Horby, who is based at the Salisbury campus, said he hadn’t previously thought about the risks of using social media.

The 16-year-old said: “I hadn’t really thought about the risks until today and am now going to check my privacy settings and make sure I am not on Google.

“I will also now not accept any more friend requests on Facebook unless I know the person.

“I think it is good to raise awareness about being safe on the internet because there are lots of fake accounts these days and you hear lots of stories about children and young people talking online to someone they think is their age but it not.

“In some circumstances young people have gone missing because they have arranged to meet up with someone they have been talking to online and so it is good to make people aware of this.”

Hannah Jones, who is the Student Engagement Officer in Trowbridge, said: “Today was a great opportunity to raise awareness about internet safety.

“We had a lot of involvement from students pledging positive things they use the internet for.

“The majority of young people use all forms of social media and it’s important they know how to keep themselves safe online and how to also protect their friends.

“It is important that young people know how to keep themselves safe online, from cyberbullying to social networking, Safer Internet Day aims to raise awareness of emerging online issues and ensuring that students understand the implications.”