Inspiring The Next Generation Of STEM Talent

Daniel Tovey 15th November 2018
Skills for schools

We continue our mission to inspire the next generation of STEM talent by launching our brand-new Skills for Schools initiative.

 

What is Skills for Schools?

 

The Cloudreach global footprint continues to grow. We now have 18 offices in cities including London, Edinburgh, New York, Atlanta, Chicago, Seattle, Amsterdam, Paris, and Munich. As we establish ourselves in more locations around the globe, we recognise the importance of giving back to those communities and investing in the future talent pool of our exciting industry. Especially, young people from disadvantaged backgrounds who may otherwise have fewer resources and limited opportunities.

That is the goal of Skills for Schools.

The Cloudreach Cares sponsored initiative has been put together by members of our #PressforProgress Team.  The team includes Ricki Lawal, Rebecca Gordon and Charlotte Poynton in our London office and Harriet Beeson and Rory Stewart in Edinburgh.

Inspired by the New DaVinci Project, a similar initiative run in the United States by ETA in Reston, Virginia. The initiative will place Cloudreach volunteers in local schools to deliver fun and engaging STEM learning experiences for young people. The volunteers will teach technical coding skills, introducing them to programming languages like Python and Java via interactive games. They will also run workshops nurturing soft skills like assertiveness and avoiding impostor syndrome. Preparing young learners to collaborate and communicate effectively in the world of work.

 

“Obviously, the tech industry is having a huge impact on the world at a wider level but there is a lot of people at Cloudreach who want to make a difference for individuals and communities around them. Skills for Schools provides a platform to give back and allows Cloudreach to support the future of the industry.” Rebecca Gordon

Why does this matter?

 

Research carried out this year has suggested that the STEM skills gap could be costing UK businesses £1.5 billion a year in recruitment, temporary staffing, and additional training costs. What’s more, over 56% of STEM businesses asked expect the shortage to worsen over the next 10 years. As the sector continues to grow, so too does the need to invest in the future talent pool. By giving young people access to STEM learning opportunities, we hope Skills for Schools will help inspire a new generation of talented, diverse entrants into our industry.

 

Just getting started

 

The initiative will kick-off in schools based in London and Edinburgh first. After that, the team plans to expand to other cities around the world where we have a headquarters. The scheme isn’t just limited to schools either. There are also plans to partner with the UK charity Centrepoint, to provide growth and development opportunities for young, homeless people.

 

“It is one thing to be seen as successful in the corporate world but if we can be seen to be taking our social and corporate responsibilities seriously, we really separate ourselves from  other companies, inspiring underrepresented groups into a career in technology.” Rory Stewart

 

Giving back

 

If you have followed the Cloudreach blog before, you will probably be aware of our Cloudy values:

 

  1. Be easy to work with
  2. Respect the individual & individuality
  3. Be one step ahead
  4. Promote personal growth

 

These values are in place to help maintain an inclusive and productive working environment. They are also there to encourage people to grow and develop their various skills and talents. The Skills for School initiative embraces all of these values, reinforcing the idea that a career in STEM  can be accessible to all, regardless of background or gender.