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News & Events

We regularly hold Open Events where you can find out more about the South Central IoT, the digital sector and the qualifications and apprenticeships we offer. You can also keep up-to-date with the latest news below!

News and Events

South Central Institute of Technology
Open Event – Tuesday 30 November

5:00pm - 7:00pm | Bletchley Campus

Our SCIoT open events are the perfect opportunity for you to come and check out The South Central Institute of Technology and see if you could imagine yourself here!

Join us at one of our open events to hear from our tutors about the range of courses we offer, tour our facilities, and ask any questions that you may have about the South Central Institute of Technology. You can even get support to apply on the day too!

Register to attend

Latest news

South Central Institute of Technology wins bid to provide free digital skills courses

The South Central Institute of Technology (SCIoT) at Bletchley has won a contract worth almost a million pounds to provide free study programmes to help local businesses improve their digital skills.

The In Work Skills Pilot from the Department of Education will enable companies to enrol their staff to learn about Cyber Security, Data Analytics, Power Platforms and Cloud Computing among others.

Milton Keynes College Principal, Alex Warner says, “This is a massive vote of confidence from the government in the SCIoT. We’re among the first to be given the go ahead to offer these courses which will give local businesses the chance to bring staff up-to-date in some of the most important digital skills from October this year.”

The news comes just a month after it was announced that the SCIoT had also won a £3.5 million bid with Milton Keynes College to set up a new skills centre to improve links with business – again in a government pilot scheme. Other partners in that scheme include MK Chamber, the South East Midlands Local Enterprise Partnership (SEMLEP) and MK Council, along with the city- wide artificial intelligence group, MKAI.

On top of that, the SCIoT will receive money from the Skills Development Fund to offer digital programmes for people who are out of work and want to retrain to become more employable.

Yaseen Akhtar, Director of Curriculum at the SCIoT says, “This is a terrific opportunity for local companies to have their staff learn crucial professional skills which will be of great value to their business. From the individual’s perspective, this is a way to gain industry-recognised qualifications which can only enhance their future career prospects. They won’t be on their own either. Each learner will benefit from personalised specialist support provided by one of our dedicated digital coaches. There really is no downside to signing up.”

Alex says, “Virtually everyone who is in a job or is looking for one can benefit hugely from the skills training we can now offer them. The benefits to the local economy will be significant, as well as providing a lot of people with the chance to make real steps forward in their working lives.”

Companies wishing to find out more can get in touch via

Digital Short Courses: Begin your digital career with SCIoT

Are you currently wishing to break into a digital career? The South Central Institute of Technology could be the perfect place thanks to our selection of short courses. With 8 different pathways to choose from, beginning your career in tech couldn’t be easier, no matter where your interests lie.

Take a look at our breakdown of each short course available and learn how each pathway will help to develop and progress your skills.

Data Analytics

This course is perfect for those who wish to progress and develop their skills in data analytics. Whilst studying this course, you can expect to develop a large range of skills including communication literacy and critical thinking. At the end of the course you’ll be able to investigate a range of predictive analytic techniques and discuss the theoretical foundation of data analytics, to name a few.

Find out more about this course or get your application in today here.


The Networking short course is for you if you are looking for a career in Networking. Develop important skills needed in this area of IT such as reasoning, interpretation, and analysis, greatly helping you in your next steps upon completing the course. By the end of the course you will be able to do things such as examine networking principles and their principles, and design efficient networked systems.

Find out more about this course or get your application in today here.


This short course in Programming will be right up your street if you are looking to work within programming or coding. Develop a range of valuable skills in communication literacy, learn how to define basic algorithms to carry out different operations, and find out how you can efficiently explain the characteristics in programming.

Find out more about this course or get your application in today here.

Games Development

Our short course in Games Development is brilliant for those with creative mindsets. All projects on this course are co-delivered with employer partners, meaning that you will get trained directly by industry professionals. By the end of your training, you will be able to do things such as plan the development of a functional game prototype, where you could later go on to pursue a career in roles such as a Games Designer or Games Consultant.

Find out more about this course or get your application in today here.

Big Data Visualisation

This course is perfect for students who are interested in a career in data. Projects on this course are co-delivered with employer partners which means that you get trained directly by professionals in the industry. By the end of the course you will able to demonstrate the use of industry software to manipulate data and prepare visual presentations for data sets, among other impressive skills.

Find out more about this course or get your application in today here.

Cloud Fundamentals

The Cloud Fundamentals short course is great for those looking to understand more about cloud computing. Learn to design deployment models hosted in the cloud or how to assess the technical challenges and risks in moving IT systems to the cloud, and on completion of the course, you could work in a variety of roles such as a Cloud Networking specialist.

Find out more about this course or get your application in today here.

Innovation & Digital Transformation

This course will suit those aiming to get into job roles such as a Business Analyst or a Programme/Project Manager. Previous projects on the course have involved working with big companies like Microsoft, where all projects are taught by industry professionals. By the end of your training, you will be able to explore different types of digital transformation, review the range of methods for protecting ideas as part of a digital transformation, and more.

Find out more about this course or get your application in today here.

Cyber Security

A great short course for those interested in a career in Cyber Security, on this course you will learn about digital forensics, as well as Evidence Talks as part of the CCL group. Projects are delivered with employer partners, meaning that you will be taught by industry professionals. By the end of your training, you will be able to explore the nature of cybercrime, investigate cyber threats and hazards, and more.

Find out more about this course or get your application in today here.

Think you’re ready for a higher level qualification, or perhaps you’re interested in a digital apprentice route? We have a range of courses available to suit all interests and levels; get your application in to secure your place for September.

South Central Institute of Technology Optimistic for Tech and Security Industry Diversity

Paul Gartside

By Paul Gartside: Dual Professional at the SCIoT, Data Coach and Curriculum Developer

For the last 24 years I have worked directly as a senior leader in the UK Security Software Development Industry. The industry suffers from some significant diversity challenges, gender, ethnicity and learning pathway with University dominating the recruitment candidate pool.

I recently read the Info Security Magazine article ‘Most Workers Not Interested in Switching to a Cyber Security Role’.

The article was based on an industry survey conducted by the Cyber Security certification organisation (ISC)2. The findings, while positive about the perception of the industry, made for some depressing reading with regard to the future candidate pipeline:

  • Women were more likely than men to perceive the industry as intimidating and to be put off by the lack of diversity.
  • 77% respondents were never offered cybersecurity as part of their school or college curriculum.
  • Generation Z respondents were least likely to view cybersecurity professionals in a positive light.

This year I have had the opportunity to switch gears and take on a new challenge as Security and Data Analytics Coach at the new Milton Keynes South Central Institute of Technology. After such a long time in commercial software development I wanted to explore a more inspirational role and pass on my experience and knowledge to the potential future technologists as part of the new Institute’s Dual Professional initiative to bring experienced industry professionals into coaching and teaching roles.

My early experiences offer a potentially encouraging view for the industry, it’s early days for the South Central Institute of Technology and as a result student numbers are modest at just over 30. What is more impressive is the diversity mix: 22% female, 52% BAME, 37% with a declared learning difference. These numbers are significantly higher than for the industry the students will enter.

The Security module I teach is 80% BAME & 20% Female, again, encouraging statistics.

Having only one datapoint makes this a little difficult to scale up but based on my experiences from my time in commercial SW development recruitment candidates didn’t come close to the diversity mix above, despite concerted efforts.

There was however a very strong reliance on the university pathway for new recruits, and I suspect that this is a significant factor in driving down diverse candidates as well as limiting the diversity of learning approaches. I would like to be clear in that I have no objection to Computer Science graduates, though I believe the industry is missing out on some excellent candidates and diverse perspectives that College and Institute of Technology graduates could add to the mix.

The industry is rightly very concerned about its employee diversity. The recruitment problem, however, is a maths issue. Assuming that you hold true to hiring the best person for a job then a pool where only a small percentage of candidates are diverse means that the problem will be with us for a long time to come.

There are measures such as positive discrimination, but these can be corrosive to trust and employee relations and can undermine the credibility of those it seeks to help. A far better near-term solution would be to expand candidate acceptance criteria and maximise use of programs such as technology and digital apprenticeships.

Simply put, not everyone learns the same way and not everyone has the support network to enable them to learn at a particular institution. By expanding the diversity of the candidate pool to different institutions you expand the pool to all elements of diversity including learning, thinking and potential innovation outcomes.

The enthusiasm and the engagement I see in the classroom, along with the diversity of the students, should be a cause for celebration in the industry and it’s one that confirms I made the right decision to become a Dual Professional.

If you’re interested in becoming a Dual Professional, or want to support the South Central Institute of Technology in improving equality, diversity and inclusion across the digital sectors, take a look at our careers page.

IoT Celebrations Day

It’s been a busy couple of months for the South Central IoT, from the SCIoT Launch event to delivering our very first virtual Open Event for prospective students. On Thursday 8th July, we also took part in the very first IoT Celebration Day - the Department of Education’s national launch of IoTs across the country.

During the IoT Celebration Day, the first wave of IoTs came together on the day to showcase their successes over the past year. For SCIoT, this was a great opportunity to look back and see how much we have achieved.

As part of the celebrations, the South Central Institute of Technology received a virtual visit from Baroness Berridge, who joined SCIoT Principal, Alex Warner, SCIoT learner Alfie Blaber, and a range of other SCIoT team members. Baroness Berridge took part in sessions which explored the SCIoT’s curriculum, development plan, and the student experience. She enjoyed a presentation from Laura-Marulanda-Carter and Paul Gartside, in which she was surprised to hear about hacking methods and how easily passwords can be guessed.

Baroness Berridge was particularly interested in the cyber security and how students on this pathway are learning to keep people safe online. Baroness Berridge was delighted to find out more about the courses and brilliant opportunities on offer at SCIoT, and also received a virtual tour of the facilities and DLE.

The conversation continued over on our social channels, where photos of our current cohort were shared as well as video clips from our virtual launch event. It was a fantastic day all round, and we look forward to celebrating more success in the coming year.

Celebration Day 1 Celebration Day 2 Celebration Day 3

Meet the Coach: Kay Sawbridge, Digital Technologies

Kay Sawbridge

As we look forward to welcoming our new cohort of students in September, we’re also really pleased to welcome new staff member, Kay Sawbridge, Curriculum Developer and Digital Coach. We caught up with Kay to hear about her wealth of experience within the Digital sector, as well as her particular interest in encouraging more girls into STEM.

What do you do at SCIoT?

I teach parts of the new qualification BTEC Higher National in Digital Technologies. I will be delivering the 2 core units in Professional Practice in the Digital Economy and Innovation and Design as well as pathway units which include Emerging Technologies, Business Intelligence, Digital Sustainability, Database Design and Development, Software Development Lifecycles and Digital Technology as a Catalyst for Change. All very exciting and I can’t wait to start teaching in September.

What experience do you bring to your new role?

After working as a teaching assistant in a secondary school, much to my surprise I found that I loved the educational environment and decided to take a degree which would enable me to become a teacher. I did this with the Open University, it was a hard slog as I was working full time and looking after 2 small children, but the qualification opened the door to my career in teaching. Before joining the SCIoT I worked for over 20 years in secondary education teaching Computing and IT and became Faculty Leader for the subject at each of the 3 schools where I taught. I am passionate about ensuring students receive the very best experience in their journey through education in order to prepare them for their next steps in the digital world we live in.

I have a particular interest in encouraging more girls into STEM and improving digital skills at all levels. I have contributed to articles in TES online, Schools Week, and ICT in Education and sat on various panels including After the reboot: computing education in UK Schools, Computing in Schools Working Group, The Royal Society Partnership Grants Allocating Panel and the Teacher Panel at The National Museum of Computing, Bletchley.

What is your favourite thing about working at SCIoT?

I am really looking forward to meeting the students and passing on my enthusiasm for all things digital. Although very new to the SCIoT I already feel very at home due to the warm welcome by the wonderful staff and am excited for new challenges. Plans for the future of SCIoT look amazing and I am so thrilled to be a part of it.

What do you enjoy doing when you’re not working?

I like keeping fit, gardening and spending time with my family. I love anything techie and enjoy learning about emerging technologies.

If you’d like to meet Kay in person, why not come along to our Open Day onsite at the South Central Institute of Technology, Bletchley, on August 10th. You’ll be able to have a face to face tour of our facilities, meet coaches and students and get a real feel for what it’s like to be a SCIoT student. Register for the event here.

SCIoT launch event blog

Launch event

Last month saw the launch event for the South Central Institute of Technology - an evening packed full of useful and informative sessions.

The sessions covered a variety of topics, from equality, diversity and inclusion, to digital careers and the legacy of tech in Bletchley, as well as a live Q&A at the end of the event with questions from the audience. The SCIoT is grateful for everyone that attended, and hope that those who joined the event were able to learn something new.

If you missed out on the live broadcast, weren’t able to make it, or would like to revisit the different talks, you can watch the whole event back by following this link: South Central Institute of Technology Launch.

You can also view the individual sessions on demand via the SCIoT YouTube channel here:

1. An introduction to the South Central Institute Of Technology by Dr Julie Mills

2. What are Institutes of Technology & higher level technical qualifications with Gillian Keegan MP

3. Equality, diversity and inclusion at the South Central Institute of Technology

4. What’s it like to be a learner or digital apprentice at the South Central Institute of Technology?

5. What is the South Central Institute of Technology?

6. South Central IoT – what will the sites in Oxford and Reading be like?

7. The legacy of technology in Bletchley

8. Why are digital careers so important? From South Central Institute of Technology partners KPMG

9. What are the South Central IoT’s purpose and values?

10. The South Central Institute of Technology launch event – live Q&A

To find out more about the courses available at the SCIoT or attend an upcoming event.

Meet the Coach: Simon Graves, Data Analytics

Our dual professional coaches bring a wealth of industry knowledge and expertise to our student’s in their chosen field. We’re very lucky to have Simon Graves, Head of Operational Governance at Sainsbury’s, as a Coach to our Data Analyst students and caught up with him to find out what he’s enjoying most about working with the SCIoT.

Meet Simon Graves

What do you do at the SCIoT?

I have established a working partnership and introduction to Sainsbury’s Data and Analytic resources to support our commitment to working with local communities and educational facilities.

This partnership has culminated in Sainsbury’s contributing to the HNC in Digital Technologies and Level 4 Data Analyst apprenticeship standard.

From the idea stage to landing this as an active module in the HNC curriculum, has taken place in less than 12 months, a remarkable achievement! We act at pace with the SCIoT as we do in the real world.

The module focuses on Data Analytics covering the theoretical foundation and a range of processes and techniques to provide a hands-on experience. Topics included in the unit are fundamental statistical concepts, data exploration, data cleansing, preparation and visualisation. Understanding Analytic maturity and progression through Descriptive, Predictive & Prescriptive Analytics and common methods and techniques found in each of these areas – a real range for the students to deliver and evidence against.

What are your credentials for working in your position?

I have 30+ years of experience in Data, specialising in Data Provisioning, Architecture, Data Management and Governance. All roles contribute and drive the exploitation of Data to enable informed, effective decisions and future direction for companies across many sectors, including, Finance, Insurance, Telco and Retail.

What is the benefit of working as a dual professional for you and our students?

We were an organisation that could offer the perfect storm of knowledge, expertise, presentation skills, regional accessibility and most importantly willingness to contribute.

The IoT shared many of our own values and focus areas, including a drive on diversity from a BAME and gender perspective.

The partnership has created an open channel for students to use our colleagues for mentoring, career advice and an insight into the amazing world of Data in Sainsburys.

What is your favourite thing about working at SCIoT?

Having visibility of the awesome future talent, seeing first-hand the students tackling problems and seeing how the next generation of Data/Analytical professionals operate.

What do you enjoy doing when you’re not working?

Avid supporter of Manchester United and F1, a rollercoaster of emotions!

If you want to join our Data Analyst students and learn from Dual Professional Coaches such as Simon, take a look at this exciting pathway now.

What is it like to be a student on the Data Analytics pathway at SCIoT?

Dhivya Sachidanandan chose to study a HNC in Digital Technologies at the South Central Institute of Technology after the course was highly recommended to her by a friend. Dhivya hopes to use this course as a steppingstone to a career in bioinformatics. Read on to find out why studying at the South Central Institute of Technology was the best choice for her.

Data Analytics student

What did you enjoy the most about your course?

‘’All the course modules were so interesting, but I have to say that I enjoyed learning about a type of programming called Python, designing a database, and looking into analytics the most.’’

What do you think makes the South Central Institute of Technology stand out?

‘’The South Central IoT has got an amazing and very dedicated team of coaches who will collectively help you to go beyond what you think you are capable of. All the individual pathways that the SCIoT offer are really interesting as well, with fantastic career opportunities upon completion of the course, and some great apprenticeship programmes.’’

What do you hope to do after you have completed your studies?

‘’I have always had a keen interest in research, so I plan to combine this qualification in Digital Technologies with my qualification in Complementary Medicine to pursue a career in bioinformatics. After this I’ll look into studying for a PhD!’’

Interested in starting a career in digital technologies? The South Central Institute of Technology has a range of pathways that could be suitable for you. Take a look and apply.

South Central Institute of Technology Commits to Diversity

The South Central Institute of Technology (SCIoT) has made a firm commitment to equality and diversity by signing up to the Tech Talent Charter. The Charter is an agreement between businesses and education in the tech sector to both promote inclusion and importantly, to keep track of progress towards it by measuring and sharing levels of diversity. The Charter already boasts some big-name signatories including Microsoft, KPMG, Sainsbury’s, Dominos and various government departments.

Diversity in the Tech Sector

The tech sector has struggled for a long time to be more open and equal. According to a report from the Chartered Institute for IT (BCS) only 19% of UK IT professionals are female and just one in ten sixth form students who are taking A-Level Computer Studies are female.

It also reports that while 14% of the UK working population is from a Black, Asian or Minority Ethnic background, only 8.5% of senior leaders in the sector come from those communities. The figures are no better when it comes to disability. 19% of the nation’s workforce has a disability but only 9% of IT specialists. Meanwhile, there are 600,000 unfilled job vacancies in digital technology across the country at an estimated cost to the economy of £63 billion per year.

Diversity and Inclusion stats

Alex Warner, Principal of the SCIoT, said,
“It is by design that “Inclusion” is the number one value of the SCIoT. In everything we do we want to look through a lens that is committed to widening access and participation and this includes everyone. By everyone we mean our students, our staff and the community we serve. We want all to know that at the SCIoT they belong, and they matter. Signing the Tech Talent Charter was an easy decision because of our aligned purpose and values. The Charter compels us to do more and be more within our ecosystem. We will closely monitor progress and share this with the Charter Group to help build an up-to-date national picture of how we are attempting to overcome social injustices. This is a national problem which all educational institutions and businesses need to address on an individual basis but we can also help each other by sharing best practice and promoting a united front.”

The SCIoT operates an EDI (Equality, Diversity & Inclusion) Steering Group and is already making progress in attracting students from harder-to-reach groups. Of students already recruited, 52% are from a Black, Asian, or Ethnic Minority background, 37% are disabled or neurodiverse, while 22% are female. Meanwhile, staff jobs are being advertised in places most likely to attract diverse applicants like Diversity in Tech, Women in Tech, IT Graduate jobs and various other Digital and IT-focused platforms. Alex said,

“The initial efforts appear to be having an impact, but our ambitions are to reflect the community we serve and we have to do more to reflect society across Milton Keynes, Oxford and Reading. We want to increase the number of students from all those areas from where fewer people have traditionally accessed Higher Education. If the plan is to “Level Up” we have to try to address all forms of inequality.

Debbie Forster is CEO of the Tech Talent Charter. Welcoming the SCIoT she said,
“The importance of greater inclusion and diversity in tech is, thankfully, no longer up for debate. Sectors and organisations now need to work together to shift the dial – and this will happen a lot quicker if we pool our successes, failures, ideas and learn from them to bring about real structural change. In our inaugural report, we stressed the importance of collaboration. One single company can’t do it alone, which is why we’re asking organisations to sign up to the Tech Talent Charter and join the movement (now approximately 500 Signatories). Companies can also access our TTC Toolkit, a set of free resources designed to help organisations improve their inclusion and diversity”.

Find out more about the Tech Talent Charter here. You can also follow them on Twitter (@techcharteruk) and LinkedIn (@tech talent charter)

My experience as a HNC Digital Technologies student at the South Central Institute of Technology

Deborah Mungai joined the South Central Institute of Technology to study Security and Networking this year after finishing her A levels. She began exploring the options open to her that would cater for her passion for tech, and reviewed universities, apprenticeships and South Central IoT.

Deborah’s schoolteacher managed to schedule a meeting with Laura, Head of Curriculum at South Central Institute of Technology, and the rest is history. Deborah tells her story about her experience.

Networking student

“This turned into a golden opportunity for me as soon as I visited the college for the boot camp. The building is separated from all other buildings and it was so quiet and clean, there were only a few students around which was positive as the teachers can offer more advice one-on-one or in small groups. At the Digital Bootcamp we were presented with all of the modules involved in the course and what we would gain from these modules.

Throughout the course we have learnt so much from the tutors – they really speak from the heart because they have so much personal experience. The tasks we’re set really push you to communicate and ask for help from teachers and fellow students. I have enjoyed meeting new people, and the flexibility of the course means I can keep my part time job and my online business as well.

After finishing my course, I would want to get more experience in Cyber Security and to work for a big company like Cisco, Microsoft or Google, that would be a dream come true! I generally want to work and gain experience across different sectors, I could even help educate others.”

What would your advice be to someone interested in studying at the SCIoT?

“To those who may have finished school and might not know what they want to do after school, I would advise to try out the South Central Institute of Technology, it gives you the option to study further before you decide if you want to continue with higher education, begin an apprenticeship or straight into work. It can also help you decide what area of Computing or Games & Animation you want to specialise in.

I can’t say how much I love being part of the South Central Institute of Technology, it has given me so many opportunities and really opened my eyes to how I can achieve my goals.

South Central Institute of Technology is the best place to be!”

What’s it like to be a Games and Animation student?

Joshua is currently completing the Games and Animation pathway at the South Central Institute of Technology. After finding it difficult to find work during the Coronavirus pandemic, Josh was drawn to the friendly atmosphere at the SCIoT.

Games & Animation student

What do you enjoy the most about your course?

‘’I really enjoy how I’m able to interact with lots of different people from different age groups, as well as learning something new every day.’’

What do you hope to do in the future after your studies?

‘’I would love to go into the games industry to some capacity. I think it would be really exciting.’’

What advice would you give to people who are deciding on which pathway to complete at the South Central Institute of Technology?

‘’Make sure that you look at the different modules that each pathway contains and ask the Coaches to explain further about them to get a better understanding of what you’ll be doing, and if it is ultimately the right course for you.’’

Could a HNC in Games and Animation be the right pathway for you? Find out more.

Why studying at the SCIoT was a no brainer for Omar Finnerty

Omar Finnerty joined the South Central Institute of Technology on the HNC Digital Technologies Cyber Security pathway after finding out about it through his tutors at Milton Keynes College. Having already experienced the teaching and working style from the College, it was a no-brainer for Omar when deciding what and where to study next.

Cyber Security student

What drew you wanting to study at the South Central Institute of Technology?

‘’I already knew what the quality of the courses would be like first-hand. My experience on the course at MK College was extremely rewarding and exciting, so I knew that the level four course would be excellent. I was also drawn to the wide variety of subjects to study in Digital Technologies. Whilst my primary interest is in cyber security, I knew that the South Central IoT had other courses like programming, networking etc., that I could choose to pursue instead should my interests change.’’

What are you enjoying the most about your course?

‘’I really like the staff and teachers here at the SCIoT. The teaching on my Digital Technologies qualification has been impeccable and the support that has been given to aid students has been flawless.’’

What do you hope to do after you have competed your studies?

‘’My desired pathway is focused primarily on IT security. After completing my education, I hope to go into either a security-based role at a company or go into further education within a security orientated pathway.’’

What advice would you give to people who are trying to decide on which pathway to complete at the South Central Institute of Technology?

‘’Any of the pathways available at SCIoT will be beneficial to your future career. For example, the HNC Digital Technologies course has allowed me to gain a lot of experience with different IT fields, not just strictly in security.’’

Could a Digital Technologies HNC specialising in Cyber Security be the right pathway for you? Find out more.

Why Hok-Yu decided to join the South Central Institute of Technology

Upon completing his Access to HE course with MK College last year, Hok-Yu wanted to continue his studies in the field of digital technologies, and says that having been familiar with the College and its teaching style, strongly felt it beneficial to join the South Central IoT to improve his employability.

Software student

What are you enjoying the most about this course?

‘’I really enjoyed meeting likeminded individuals from different backgrounds. Being from a diverse background myself, it was great to meet so many people also from diverse backgrounds, as well as different age groups. It was good to work with those who are interested in the same industry as me and who have similar career aspirations.’’

‘’The visits and interviews we were able to have with people from industry was also a real highlight for me. It was really enjoyable, and I was able to gain some real insights into how the industry works.’’

What do you hope to do after you have completed your studies?

‘’I hope to obtain enough skills so that I can land a job in the IT industry and become a highly skilled and qualified professional, with the hopes to, in the future, become a front-end developer. Whilst I do enjoy other aspects in IT such as data science and networking etc., I would prefer to work with something that has a visual interface.’’

What advice would you give to someone who is contemplating studying at the South Central Institute of Technology?

‘’I would suggest that you have a clear goal of what it is you want to do with this course after you finish it, before you enrol. The course is a lot of hard work, so make sure that it is something that you want to do!’’

‘’I would also advise that you get familiar with the career path that your chosen pathway will lead to, so that you are able to learn the specific technology and skills that you need to build.’’

Interested in starting a career in digital technologies? The South Central Institute of Technology has a number of different pathways that could be suitable for you. Find out more.

Meet the Coach: Andrew Sheldon, Cyber Security

We’re incredibly lucky to have so many fantastic Coaches at the South Central IoT, many of whom work professionally within their area of expertise, bringing a greater level of current industry knowledge to our students.

A great example of this is Andrew Sheldon, a computer forensic consultant with more than 30 years of experience specialising in the investigation of digital crime, piracy, fraud and abuse in digital systems.

As well as being the Director of Innovation at CCL Solutions Group incorporating Evidence Talks Ltd, Andrew designs and delivers the Digital Forensics Unit of the Cyber Security module on the HNC in Digital Technologies at the South Central IoT.

Cyber Security Coach

Meet Andrew Sheldon

“In 2006 I was awarded one of the first Masters Degrees in Forensic Computing from Royal Military College of Science at Cranfield University. I was appointed a member of the MSc Degree management committee and was the module manager, developer and lecturer for the Internet Investigation module of the Degree.

I have been called as an expert witness in many criminal, civil and employment tribunals in cases involving computer forensic analysis and have conducted more than 1000 forensic examinations involving major fraud, data breaches, digital piracy, corporate espionage, corporate policy abuse, Child exploitation, copyright and IP theft, hacking, encryption and password recovery.

Since 2004 I have been responsible for developing specialist techniques and technologies used globally by digital forensic practitioners and first responders within the law enforcement, military, intelligence and corporate sectors.

In 2020 I was asked to design and build the new digital forensic laboratories at Cranfield University and my team at CCL and I have been contracted to design and develop the new Digital Forensics Masters Degree. I have also been appointed as Course Director for this degree.

I have always enjoyed helping others understand the complex and rapidly changing domain of digital forensics and the challenges we face as practitioners.

My role as Director of Innovation enables me to identify and develop new techniques in response to these challenges and I aim to share my enthusiasm for this branch of forensic science with students and illustrate how rewarding a career in digital forensic can be.

I really enjoy the interactive engagement with students during my lectures and the superb support I receive from the course manager, Paul Gartside. Every day is a learning day when you work in digital forensics.”

Find out more about our Cyber Security pathway.