Global IT services, consulting and business solutions organisation, Tata Consultancy Services, hosted an event in Edinburgh geared toward encouraging school children to strive for careers in technology.
The TCS Digital Explorers – Experience Work event at Easter Road Stadium gave almost 1,000 local students aged 12 to 18 the chance to learn about careers in cutting-edge technologies.
The conference was an immersive mix of interactive workshops, master classes, keynotes, and panel discussions on topics such as coding, crypto-currency, and the Internet of Things (IoT). Digital Explorers met experts from across the industry and TCS, who discussed industry opportunities.
The youngsters were given advice on how to navigate a world of possibilities in technology careers, and were invited to take part in workshops on how to tailor CVs and shine at job interviews. Students also practiced their networking skills with representatives from Amazon, Skyscanner, IBM, RBS, Eqtr, and JP Morgan.
Gopalan Rajagopalan, head of TCS Scotland, said: “The UK is facing a digital skills gap; and the education sector, government, and private sector need to work together to equip students with these skills and encourage them to pursue STEM careers.
“Scotland has a long tradition of innovation and creative thinking. The technology sector is an important part of Scotland’s economic future and TCS is committed to bridging the skills gap and showing the next generation that jobs in the tech sector are rewarding and intellectually stimulating.”
Yogesh Chauhan, director, corporate sustainability, TCS UK, said: “I’m thrilled at the passion, insights, and community spirit that the TCS Digital Explorers events have encouraged. We are highlighting possible careers in technology, helping young people imagine their place in the industry, and identify potential paths to getting there. We’re very grateful to our IT industry partners for generously volunteering their time and to EDT for helping organise the event.”
A student who attended the event said: “We really enjoyed the code-breaking challenge. It was good to get the opportunity to work together as a team and practice our problem-solving skills.”
Alan McCurdy, a computer science teacher at Liberton High School who attended the event, added: “We wanted to get the kids involved so they could get familiar with how business works and learn about the different areas in STEM. We have more girls here than boys, and we wanted to get the girls enthused about what’s provided, especially today.”
Councillor Ian Perry, Edinburgh City Council’s Education Convener, said: “Scotland has a long tradition of innovation and creative thinking. The technology sector is an important part of our economic future, and we are committed to helping young people, their parents and teachers realise the potential opportunities on offer. Fun, accessible and engaging events like TCS Digital Explorers Experience Work are a key part of that mission.”
TCS Digital Explorers is part of TCS’ wider IT Futures programme, which aims to nurture the IT talent of tomorrow, and focuses on young people in schools, colleges and universities, as well as their influencers – teachers, parents, and peers. Working closely with charities, social enterprises, and TCS employees, IT Futures has already reached 300,000 students directly since its launch in 2013, with participation from over 1,600 TCS employee volunteers.