TECH savvy students across the UK have flocked to GCHQ sessions to inspire future cyber security experts – but this week the drive is particularly focused on inspiring girls to join the talent pipeline.

Sheila Flavell 100x100Sheila Flavell, COO at FDM group and Chair of the Advisory board for the IoC:

“This is a very welcome initiative which will give hundreds of women the opportunity to learn more about a career in the cybersecurity industry.

"All too often, women who have taken time out to care for friends or family members have found themselves struggling to get back into work. Likewise, not enough young women are entering the technology industry, missing out on valuable career opportunities and creating an imbalanced workforce.

"These free courses underline GCHQ’s commitment to tackling the gender divide and offering accessible opportunities to people from all backgrounds. Accessibility is key, it’s impossible to build a truly diverse workforce of the future without working hard to bring in people from all walks of life.”

The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) has this week (15 Jan) announced a 300 per cent growth in young people taking part in their CyberFirst courses since launching in 2016.

The number of courses offered has increased to meet the rising demands of a future generation engaging with the cyber security profession.

The broad CyberFirst programme offers a range of courses, competitions and student bursaries for 11-to-17 year olds.

But this week the organisation is appealing to girls aged 12 and 13 in Year 8, S2 or Year 9 (Northern Ireland) to take part in an exciting competition specifically for young women, because just 11 per cent of the global cyber workforce is female.

Teams of girls have until Monday 21 January to register in time for the start of the CyberFirst Girls competition, which will see them pit their cyber wits against one another in a head-scratching set of online challenges.

Chris Ensor, NCSC Deputy Director for Skills and Growth, said:

“Trebling the number of young people taking part on CyberFirst courses is an encouraging start however women only make a small proportion of the global cyber workforce and throughout GCHQ and the NCSC we are looking to address the imbalance.

“Ensuring the inquisitive instincts of young people to find out how things work are maintained is hugely important.

“In the first two editions of the CyberFirst Girls competition we have seen how much entrants engage with the challenges we set and this year’s competition is due to be bigger and just as cryptic.”

As an added incentive to all the girls competing in the competition, the NCSC will be offering around 600 free places on specially commissioned four day CyberFirst Defenders courses in April and May 2019. These courses will be ‘all girls’ and a mix of residential and non-residential at locations across the UK.

Participants can enter in teams of up to four, along with a teacher/school mentor who will act as a guardian. The competition has two stages – a week long online phase in January and a finals day in Edinburgh in March 2019.

2018 CyberFirst Girls Final

Over the past two years, 12,500 girls in schools across the UK have participated in the NCSC’s CyberFirst Girls competition of problem-solving and code cracking challenges to crown the UK’s most cyber-capable young women. 

“I really enjoyed how the competition story fitted together and was set out like a realistic cyber attack. The challenges covered skills in computing you wouldn’t ordinarily come across at school.” Odette, a school student from Gloucestershire 

“The competition taught me and my team-mates a lot and I think I'd now like to do computing for GCSEs.” Anna-Rose, a school student from Armagh, Northern Ireland

“I never would have entered the competition because it wasn't something I was interested in, but then I did it and realised how vast cyber security is and all the different things you can do with that knowledge.” Neve, a school student from Kent

The online phase of the competition will see each team attempt to complete a series of challenges split into four categories: cryptography, cyber security, logic and coding and networking. The top 10 teams will move onto compete in a face-to-face Grand Final in Edinburgh in March 2019.

Led and inspired by the National Cyber Security Centre (a part of GCHQ), CyberFirst is a programme of opportunities and support helping young people explore their passion for computers and technology and introducing them to the fascinating and critical world of cyber security.

The CyberFirst Girls competition is a high profile intervention by the NCSC to allow 12/13yrs old girls the opportunity to explore cyber related challenges first hand. The National Cyber Security Centre has engaged with 1,968 students on our CyberFirst courses in the 12 months prior to Aug 18

About National Cyber Security Centre: The UK Government is fully committed to defending against cyber threats and address the cyber skills gap to develop and grow talent. The NCSC was created as part of the five year National Cyber Security Strategy (NCSS) announced in 2016, supported by £1.9billion of transformational investment.

The NCSC provides a single, central body for cyber security at a national level and is the UK’s technical authority on cyber. It manages national cyber security incidents, carries out real-time threat analysis and provides tailored sectoral advice.

GCHQ is the parent body for the NCSC, meaning that it can draw on the organisation’s world-class skills and sensitive capabilities.

You may also be interested in these articles:

Register, Login or Login with your Social Media account:


Advertisers

Advertiser Skyscrapers

Video Advert

Newsroom Activity

FE News: The Future of Education News Channel had a status update on Twitter 11 hours 40 minutes ago

RT @FENews: Connected Classroom and 1:1 Learning for Harrogate Grammar School: Based in North Yorkshire, Harrogate Grammar School (@Harroga…
View Original Tweet

Latest Education News

Further Education News

The FE News Channel gives you the latest education news and updates on emerging education strategies and the #FutureofEducation and the #FutureofWork.

Providing trustworthy and positive Further Education news and views since 2003, we are a digital news channel with a mixture of written word articles, podcasts and videos. Our specialisation is providing you with a mixture of the latest education news, our stance is always positive, sector building and sharing different perspectives and views from thought leaders, to provide you with a think tank of new ideas and solutions to bring the education sector together and come up with new innovative solutions and ideas.

FE News publish exclusive peer to peer thought leadership articles from our feature writers, as well as user generated content across our network of over 3000 Newsrooms, offering multiple sources of the latest education news across the Education and Employability sectors.

FE News also broadcast live events, podcasts with leading experts and thought leaders, webinars, video interviews and Further Education news bulletins so you receive the latest developments in Skills News and across the Apprenticeship, Further Education and Employability sectors.

Every week FE News has over 200 articles and new pieces of content per week. We are a news channel providing the latest Further Education News, giving insight from multiple sources on the latest education policy developments, latest strategies, through to our thought leaders who provide blue sky thinking strategy, best practice and innovation to help look into the future developments for education and the future of work.

In May 2020, FE News had over 120,000 unique visitors according to Google Analytics and over 200 new pieces of news content every week, from thought leadership articles, to the latest education news via written word, podcasts, video to press releases from across the sector.

We thought it would be helpful to explain how we tier our latest education news content and how you can get involved and understand how you can read the latest daily Further Education news and how we structure our FE Week of content:

Main Features

Our main features are exclusive and are thought leadership articles and blue sky thinking with experts writing peer to peer news articles about the future of education and the future of work. The focus is solution led thought leadership, sharing best practice, innovation and emerging strategy. These are often articles about the future of education and the future of work, they often then create future education news articles. We limit our main features to a maximum of 20 per week, as they are often about new concepts and new thought processes. Our main features are also exclusive articles responding to the latest education news, maybe an insight from an expert into a policy announcement or response to an education think tank report or a white paper.

FE Voices

FE Voices was originally set up as a section on FE News to give a voice back to the sector. As we now have over 3,000 newsrooms and contributors, FE Voices are usually thought leadership articles, they don’t necessarily have to be exclusive, but usually are, they are slightly shorter than Main Features. FE Voices can include more mixed media with the Further Education News articles, such as embedded podcasts and videos. Our sector response articles asking for different comments and opinions to education policy announcements or responding to a report of white paper are usually held in the FE Voices section. If we have a live podcast in an evening or a radio show such as SkillsWorldLive radio show, the next morning we place the FE podcast recording in the FE Voices section.

Sector News

In sector news we have a blend of content from Press Releases, education resources, reports, education research, white papers from a range of contributors. We have a lot of positive education news articles from colleges, awarding organisations and Apprenticeship Training Providers, press releases from DfE to Think Tanks giving the overview of a report, through to helpful resources to help you with delivering education strategies to your learners and students.

Podcasts

We have a range of education podcasts on FE News, from hour long full production FE podcasts such as SkillsWorldLive in conjunction with the Federation of Awarding Bodies, to weekly podcasts from experts and thought leaders, providing advice and guidance to leaders. FE News also record podcasts at conferences and events, giving you one on one podcasts with education and skills experts on the latest strategies and developments.

We have over 150 education podcasts on FE News, ranging from EdTech podcasts with experts discussing Education 4.0 and how technology is complimenting and transforming education, to podcasts with experts discussing education research, the future of work, how to develop skills systems for jobs of the future to interviews with the Apprenticeship and Skills Minister.

We record our own exclusive FE News podcasts, work in conjunction with sector partners such as FAB to create weekly podcasts and daily education podcasts, through to working with sector leaders creating exclusive education news podcasts.

Education Video Interviews

FE News have over 700 FE Video interviews and have been recording education video interviews with experts for over 12 years. These are usually vox pop video interviews with experts across education and work, discussing blue sky thinking ideas and views about the future of education and work.

Events

FE News has a free events calendar to check out the latest conferences, webinars and events to keep up to date with the latest education news and strategies.

FE Newsrooms

The FE Newsroom is home to your content if you are a FE News contributor. It also help the audience develop relationship with either you as an individual or your organisation as they can click through and ‘box set’ consume all of your previous thought leadership articles, latest education news press releases, videos and education podcasts.

Do you want to contribute, share your ideas or vision or share a press release?

If you want to write a thought leadership article, share your ideas and vision for the future of education or the future of work, write a press release sharing the latest education news or contribute to a podcast, first of all you need to set up a FE Newsroom login (which is free): once the team have approved your newsroom (all content, newsrooms are all approved by a member of the FE News team- no robots are used in this process!), you can then start adding content (again all articles, videos and podcasts are all approved by the FE News editorial team before they go live on FE News). As all newsrooms and content are approved by the FE News team, there will be a slight delay on the team being able to review and approve content.

 RSS IconRSS Feed Selection Page