BIMA D-day is an annual event to promote digital careers in schools by partnering schools with agencies.
Our Twitter party for Social Media Week London called attention to tech’s image problem and we saw D-day as an opportunity to correct this. The perception that tech is for men in geeky glasses still prevails.
MintTwist were paired with Bentley Wood High School for Girls, based in Stanmore. We worked with Year 9 ICT and Computing students. Bentley Wood encourages girls in this year to become Digital Leaders so they can share their knowledge and technology passion with teachers and other pupils.
The first half of our day focused on introducing digital careers. As BIMA has highlighted, there is a skills shortage for our industry and we need to raise more awareness around the types of jobs available and the skills they require.
The digital industry has grown quickly. When I was in the year 9 equivalent 20 years ago, digital didn’t exist. There was no internet and mobile phones were as big as bricks. I wanted to be a journalist or baker and had never heard the term “Marketing Director”. The UK’s digital economy is recognised as being crucial to our future financial success – for this to happen, events like D-day need to happen more often so we create the workforce we need.
We wanted the girls to understand that:
- Digital careers are varied – there are many avenues you can take. Different jobs have different skills but there is something for everyone.
- More women need to get into digital jobs, especially those in areas such as development. We need to get rid of this gender imbalance.
The second half of the day was spent on challenges BIMA set for digital design, mobile apps, social media and coding. Throughout the day we were impressed at how hard the girls worked, how well they worked with each other and their creativity. Their enthusiasm was inspiring and there were things for us to learn in the approach that they took. It is easy in any job to keep doing things the same way – getting out and seeing how someone else would do it is invigorating.
The UK’s digital economy is recognised as being crucial to our future financial success – for this to happen, events like D-day need to happen more often so we create the workforce we need.
We felt privileged to work with a great school and to have the opportunity to represent our industry. The Bentley Wood girls had great ideas and we think they are strong contenders to win some of the challenges. Fingers crossed!