Parliamentary reception celebrates young software engineering talent from Scottish universities
Scottish universities are developing some of the brightest minds when it comes to software engineering talent, a fact which was celebrated at a recent reception held in Holyrood on 2nd November.
ScotlandIS and PDMS supported the event, hosted by Pam Gosal MSP to recognise the achievements of present and past winners and finalists of ScotlandIS’ long-standing Young Software Engineer of the Year Awards.
Pam Gosal MSP welcomed guests from across government, industry and academia and highlighted the key role that Scotland’s universities play in nurturing new digital talent. She also welcomed the previous award winners and finalists in the audience to the Scottish Parliament and reflected on the impact the Awards have had on their personal and professional development.
Colin Cook, Director of the Economic Development Directorate at the Scottish Government, focused on the contribution that the digital sector makes to Scotland’s economy and the importance of digital transformation across government services.
Drawing comparisons between Scotland’s history of pioneering engineering excellence and PDMS’ engineering capability and heritage, Catriona Watt, Chief Commercial Officer at PDMS explained that as a software engineering company with a growing presence in Scotland, PDMS shares a common objective with the other speakers, of harnessing the potential of digital innovation, creativity and engineering to make the world a better place.
The final speaker, Karen Meechan, Chief Executive Officer of ScotlandIS, highlighted the longevity of the Young Software Engineer of the Year Awards which have been going strong for over 30 years. Karen also spoke of the digital skills gap and the pressing economic need to develop a steady stream of Scottish talent to fill the growing demand from Scotland’s thriving tech sector.
Guests at the reception then had the opportunity to meet with this year’s winner and past winners and finalists and learn first-hand how the awards have positively impacted their careers in technology, both in Scotland and further afield.
PDMS is a proud sponsor the Young Software Engineer Awards and Neal Kelly, Chief Information Officer joined the judging panel for the first time this year. Neal was hugely impressed by the ambition, creativity and innovation demonstrated by all the finalists.
The submissions ranged from a software tool that can identify essential genes to a low-cost, off-grid sensor monitoring system. This year’s winner was Daniel Gearie who created software that can physically locate the position of a drone operator. Locating drone operators rather than the drone themselves can help enormously if drones are in the wrong hands – for example disrupting flights at airports.
PDMS, as a growing digital business, attaches great importance to inspiring and nurturing the next generation of talent in Scotland. The Glasgow-based company already plays an active role through placements, apprenticeships and engagement in programmes such as the Critical Friends Programme (a ScotlandIS and Developing the Young Workforce initiative to connect industry with schools to encourage more young people to take up Computer Science as a subject).
With a focus on the software engineering aspect of digital transformation, PDMS is delighted to support the Young Software Engineer Awards and the great work that ScotlandIS undertakes to develop, support and promote Scotland’s digital economy and talent.