Digitally driven UCTC increases student access to technology to bridge skills gap

ATMs. Traffic lights. Email. These are technologies many of us absolutely cannot live without, and they’re all powered behind the scenes by mammoth mainframes, servers, and other intricate technologies that require the expertise of IT pros. But there is a growing concern amongst industry experts over the widening “skills gap,” or the shortage of trained IT technicians available to fill thousands of jobs across the country. According to the latest Entrepreneur Index, London is home to Europe’s fastest growing tech sector, with 27 percent of all job growth in the country generated by the tech and digital sector. Just across the pond in the US, less than 2.4 percent of college students graduate with a degree in computer science, and by 2020 there’s expected to be 1 million more computer science jobs than students.

What does that mean for an average person? Almost all business and life functions – from cashing a paycheck to checking the weather – are digitally driven. Without skilled professionals at the helm, you can say goodbye to your favorite smartphone apps, ATMs and even the convenience of booking airline tickets online. The good news is that more and more schools have begun to address the skills gap in a number of ways, whether by integrating technology skill-building into their curriculums, deploying collaborative devices or in some cases, creating massive open online courses (MOOCs), a form of e-learning that’s available to an unlimited number of students at no charge.

One UK-based school, Uckfield Community Technology College (UCTC), uses Lenovo ThinkPad YOGA 11e Chromebooks to ensure its students are engaged with technology regardless of the topic they’re studying. Whether your school designs an IT curriculum to spur interest in skills development or you’ve just begun integrating technology in the classroom, working to bridge today’s skills gap is a critical undertaking. To learn more about how Uckfield Community Technology College uses Lenovo’s ThinkPad YOGA 11e Chromebooks to enhance learning and facilitate a greater connection with technology, click here [PDF].