On 12 July, Croydon College welcomed influential employers from the tech sector to formally launch the Croydon Digital Skills Hub, which will ensure residents have the opportunity to gain new skills in the growing industry.
The launch event saw businesses committed to the hub join those identified as key players in the sector and invited dignitaries from Croydon Council and the Greater London Authority (GLA) to celebrate this new way of partnership working with the sole aim of benefitting residents and employers in the borough.
Statistics has shown that there has been a 40% increase in digital businesses in Croydon in the last 10 years, and it is home to more than 2,000 digital, data and technology businesses, employing more than 8,000 people in the borough.
However, there has been a 40% decrease in young people taking IT subjects at GCSE – and the Croydon Digital Skills Hub aims to reverse that trend by providing more than 400 participants with training on Level 2 and 3 qualifications, aiming to get at least 60% of those progressing into positive work-related outcomes.
Guests at the launch heard impassioned speeches from Croydon’s tech community, including Tech Entrepreneur Sarah Luxford, Go 2 Games’ Craig Constantinides and Chris Burtenshaw from Strata Security, as well as Croydon’s Deputy Mayor, Councillor Lynne Hale.
Mike Davies, Croydon College’s Employability Hub Manager (pictured below on the left), said: “The digital sector is enormous. London is home to a third of the European tech giants – those are the jobs of the future. Here in Croydon, we have this amazing potential. We want to hear from employers about their needs so we can ensure we’re filling the skills gaps now and in the future.” Martin Silverwood, Croydon College’s Vice Principal for Education and Quality (pictured below on the right), said: “The College has long held students at the heart of everything we do. This feels like such an inventive way and opportunity to move forward.”
Cllr Hale said: “I know a great deal of work and collaboration has taken place between Croydon College, John Ruskin College, and employers across Croydon and further afield to bring us to this important moment.”
“This hub will play an important part in widening accessibility to digital skills training, apprenticeships, work placements and job opportunities. And with Croydon’s large population of young people, I think – and very much hope – you are going to be very busy.”
“This is an exciting day for Croydon College and for Croydon. The Croydon Digital Skills Hub will make a significant contribution towards Croydon’s digital ecosystem and regeneration; and give some great opportunities for learners to develop their digital talents.”
Michelle Cuomo-Boorer, Assistant Director Skills & Employment at the GLA said: “The Mayor’s Academies Programme is designed to address employer skills shortages and ensure that all Londoners can access the employment opportunities in London’s priority sectors, including digital. The Croydon Digital Skills Hub will work with Croydon’s many digital employers and help support the borough’s residents into sustainable employment.”
Funded by the GLA, the Digital Skills Hub is a joint project between the College and John Ruskin College, who will initially be working alongside 17 of the borough’s employers. Courses available as part of the Digital Skills Hub at Croydon College include:
- Digital Marketing Level 2
- IT User Skills Level 3
- Coding Practices Level 3
- IT User Skills Level 2
- Cyber Security Practices Level 3
- Systems Infrastructure Level 3 Apprenticeships include:
- Data Analyst Level 4
- IT Solutions Level 3
- Junior Content Producer Level 3
- Digital Marketer Level 3
- Information Communication Technician Level 3
Croydon College will also provide access to its careers coach service, with full time courses for those aged 16-18 including IT & Digital Skills (Entry 3 up to Level 3), Esports (Levels 2 & 3) and Games Animation & Digital Media (Levels 2 & 3).
To find out more information on the Croydon Digital Skills Hub at Croydon College, and to apply, visit www.croydon.ac.uk/the-croydon-digital-skills-hub/
For more information on Croydon College’s full-time courses, follow this link.