2014-01-23 17:46:02 -
The UK’s leading IT graduate employer, FDM Group provided over 1,500 school pupils from across Manchester with the opportunity to learn how to write computer code and create applications in a bid to inspire and encourage school children to studying IT.
The Careers Aspiration Event was held at Manchester Central on Tuesday 21st January, FDM Group along with forty other employers and training providers delivered specific skill set ‘Have a Go’ activities for pupils in years 9, 10 and 11 from schools within the Manchester City Council area.
Heather Bridge, FDM’s European Training Manager said of the event, “It was a great opportunity to inspire younger generations into IT and address the skills shortage in the industry, and FDM is
proud to be a part of that”.
Apple computers were set up with six different coding activities for pupils to get involved and try their hand at what it is like to work in IT. Each activity had vital code missing from the program which once pupils had learnt to write the correct code and completed the activity they were able to then play an interactive game.
The coding activities were designed to engage pupils with IT and show them what a career in this exciting industry can offer; it was perceived from the event that the majority of pupils had not realised that IT can actually lead to a fun and interesting career choice.
The feedback from pupils at the event was extremely positive with both boys and girls expressing an interest in developing their IT skills, although it was repeatedly stated that they would much prefer to study the subject in school if the curriculum included more activities like coding, rather than how to work data-bases and other Microsoft Office related documents.
It was also found that some pupils already had taken a keen interest in IT and computer coding but had actually taught themselves at home in their own time as they did not have the opportunity to do so in their school IT lessons.
One GCSE pupil has had a keen interest in how games are developed since the age of 11 and has impressively started writing the code for his own computer game through the help of the internet and meeting other friends through an online coding group on Facebook. He stated that he would love to be learning more about this side of IT in school rather than what is taught at the moment.
The existing IT curriculum in schools is set to be changing in 2014 to a Computing curriculum which will involve a new programme of study that will prove challenging and meet the needs and ambitions of pupils. These changes look to be a welcomed by school children who attended Tuesday’s Careers Aspirations Event in Manchester.