CodeClan, Scotland’s first accredited digital skills academy, celebrates its first birthday this week with news that its first 16-week software development course in Glasgow will start in January 2017.
It will be delivered by CodeClan in The Tontine, Glasgow’s new high-tech acceleration and growth space for young businesses.
More than 150 students have embarked on CodeClan’s innovative course during the last 12 months, with 90% going on to secure roles within six months of completing the course in Scotland’s digital sector. Many are working with some of Scotland’s fastest growing tech start-ups including MakeitSocial, GeckoLabs and Intelligentpos, as well as international companies such as Adobe and Deloitte Digital.
Deputy First Minister, John Swinney, said: “More than 82,000 people in Scotland work in digital and ICT occupations. That number is going to rise, with businesses across the economy looking for more women and men with the necessary digital skills and qualifications. That is why the work of CodeClan in providing new, job-ready talent is so important.
“I would like to congratulate [the] team at CodeClan on their first anniversary, and especially all of the students who have graduated during that time. Their success in finding work shows that this industry-led academy model is effective, and playing its part in closing our digital skills gap.”
In the past year, CodeClan has moved into its permanent premises within Edinburgh’s thriving CodeBase and worked with the SQA to become the first digital skills academy in the UK to offer students a Professional Development Award (PDA) in software development.
Building on its 16-week software development course, CodeClan has also launched a series of shorter, part-time courses aimed at those keen to expand on their technical knowledge or brush up on existing skills.
CodeClan’s CEO Harvey Wheaton said: “We’re extremely proud of the progress we’ve made in our first year. We have built a team of incredibly talented instructors and created strong ties with the digital industry in Scotland. We have had great support from companies who see us as playing a critical role in helping create a sustainable future for Scotland’s digital economy.
“With all cohorts to the end of the year full, we are already getting repeat hires from several companies in Scotland. The fact that our cohorts are oversubscribed and students are referring friends and former colleagues is clear evidence that this style of academy is not only needed but is a practical and realistic route for anybody looking to work in the digital sector.”
Working closely with industry, CodeClan’s curriculum is constantly evolving to keep abreast of technology trends and aims to ensure successful students enter workplaces with relevant experience and skills.
There is no ‘typical’ role for a CodeClan student, with posts filled ranging from junior developer and software consultant to website manager, digital product tester and tech entrepreneur.
CodeClan chair and ScotlandIS chief executive, Polly Purvis, said: “It is wonderful to see CodeClan’s alumni securing such a variety of work so quickly after completing the course. We’ve seen people with a background in retail, journalism and even law come through our doors looking for a career change, and it is incredibly rewarding to help them achieve that. We have proved that the skills academy model works and we are delighted to be announcing our first cohort in Glasgow in the New Year.”
Industry led and government backed, CodeClan represents a new education model created to tackle the growing digital skills crisis in Scotland. It provides immersive, full-time and part time courses for those looking to change career, learn software development from scratch or to up-skill on previous coding knowledge.
The Skills Investment Plan for ICT and digital from Skills Development Scotland has identified around 11,000 job opportunities a year in a variety of roles within the sector, rising by 2,000 every year. This includes traditional businesses needing higher levels of technology skills, international technology businesses, and global software development companies right through to pioneering startups in data analytics, fintech, apps development and cyber security.