Over 1,000 SIM cards loaded with 30GB of free data are being offered to Fife students as part of an initiative to help them access online classes following the move to remote learning as a result of the pandemic.

The SIMs have been donated to Fife College by Vodafone as part of its renewed campaign to help hundreds of thousands of school and college students across the UK access education from home.

With coronavirus restrictions forcing the majority of courses online, some students have been unable to access classes because they don’t have the right connectivity.

Each SIM can be used in a smartphone, tablet or any other device with a SIM card port, while the 30GB of data lasts for 90 days.

Vodafone first launched its schools.connected programme in November 2020 to help 250,000 pupils across the UK access better connectivity.

The telecommunications company has now teamed up with the Daily Mail charity, Mail Force, to provide a further 150,000 SIM cards to those ‘most in need’.

Kristoffer Getchell, head of the Digital Services team at Fife College said: “It’s great that we can partner with Vodafone and Mail Force to offer our students these free Data SIMs. With so many of our students accessing lessons and resources from home, we were concerned that some might not have the right resources in place to get online.

“At Fife College we’re determined to ensure that no one misses out, and by offering these SIMs we can give 30GB of free data to the individuals who need it most. Anyone who does need help can apply for a SIM through the website and we’ll mail it out to them, or they can collect them on campus once they return.

“In addition to the electronic devices we’ve handed out to students, and our constant drive to improve online resources, we’re confident we’re doing all we can to ensure everyone at the college gets as thorough an education as possible.”

Kimmy Coburn, a student at Fife College who received a free SIM card said: “I applied for one of the SIM cards after my tutor recommended it to me. It’s been really, really useful, especially as a lot of my course has been moved online due to the coronavirus restrictions.

“I’ve used it to access online lessons, call in to do an exam, and watch several presentations through Microsoft Teams. It’s provided a good connection pretty much everywhere and has made a big difference to me.”

The SIM card giveaway at Fife College follows the institution’s development of remote desktop technology which enabled construction students to access high specification software from home.

The college also recently introduced an ‘innovative system’ to livestream lessons direct into students’ homes, and during the pandemic have delivered over 1,100 devices directly to students to better support remote learning.