Wiltshire College & University Centre is to be part of a consortium of local universities, further education colleges, councils, enterprise partners and Deloitte who will work together to respond to the UK’s digital skills gap in the South West.
This consortium has been chosen by the Department for Education (DfE) to deliver a series of funded Skills Bootcamps in digital subjects at locations across the region. This programme of Skills Bootcamps will provide learners with best-in-class digital skills courses, deliver resilient pathways to work and create a new, skilled talent pool for local employers.
The University of Bath will lead the consortium and alongside Wiltshire College & University Centre, Bath Spa University, the University of the West of England and Gloucestershire University have all partnered with the Institute of Coding (IoC), iStart/Re-start, Deloitte and Digital Engineering Technology and Innovation (DETI) to develop and deliver six new Skills Bootcamps offering short courses in critical digital skills. Topics will include creative computing, cyber security, data science, software engineering, games development and agritech.
These Skills Bootcamps will be provided in close collaboration with the Department for Work and Pensions, local Jobcentres, the West of England Combined Authority (WECA), Swindon and Wiltshire local enterprise partnerships (LEP) and the GFirst LEP (based in Gloucester). These groups will provide links to local employers to ensure that Skills Bootcamp learners find meaningful employment upon the successful completion of their course.
This builds on work by each of the partners to build new pathways to digital skills and represents the local component of the national initiative of IoC-led Skills Bootcamps.
Through this collaborative approach, consortium members will ensure that each step of the Skills Bootcamp journey is high-quality and tailored to meet the needs of employers and those looking to upskill to boost their employability. Prospective learners and interested employers can learn more about the Skills Bootcamp here.
Rachid Hourizi, Director of the Institute of Coding, said: “The Institute of Coding is pleased to be involved in this regional collaboration to level up digital skills in the South West region. Building on our existing provision, the new Skills Bootcamps will provide accessible and rapid digital skills education to the people that need it, creating more digital talent to power the region’s economy.”
Skills Bootcamps are flexible courses of up to 16 weeks, giving people the opportunity to build up tech skills and fast-track to an interview with an employer. They are being developed by the Government as part of the Lifetime Skills Guarantee and Plan for Jobs, in partnership with employers, providers and local authorities, to help people develop the skills that are in demand in their local area and get a better job.
Skills Bootcamps will be provided at no cost for learners who meet the eligibility criteria and are accepted by a Skills Bootcamp provider onto a specific programme.
Employers who wish to upskill existing employees through the Skills Bootcamps will receive a 70% discount from standard programme fees