TechHub in Schools
TechHub (formerly ICT-Connect) is ITP's in-school tech career evangelist programme, providing hundreds of presentations in schools across NZ every year, as well as the CREST Challenge, Careers expos, and advice for those looking at a career in IT.
TechHub is run by ITP in partnership with various tech associations, and supported by industry.
TechHub school presentations
The TechHub in-school presentations are the core component of the TechHub Programme. Often reaching over 50,000 students across New Zealand each year, TechHub is making a huge difference to the next generation.
TechHub presentations inspire kids by introducing them to the depth of tech roles in New Zealand and the opportunities the sector presents, seen through the eyes of the more than 100 IT and software professionals who give up their time to give presentations across New Zealand.
Through TechHub, ITP facilitates hundreds of school visits and presentations each year.
TechHub CREST Challenge
In 2016 the TechHub CREST Challenge expanded to Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch, following on from the Pilot in Wellington in 2015.
The Challenge is a collaboration run by ITP's TechHub programme, in partnership with CREST run by the Royal Society of New Zealand. CREST stands for CREativity in Science and Technology, and in the Challenge Y9/10 students develop a mobile app from initial concept and design to development.
By the end of the Challenge, students will have developed a new program/application to a beta testing stage, written it up for presentation, and given a Dragon's Den type presentation to a panel of judges, with a strong focus on teamwork.
In 2016 over 500 school students took part in the TechHub CREST Challenge from Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch with some schools including it in their curriculum. The winning teams were awarded cash prizes ($1500, $500 and 2x $250), sponsored by one of TechHub's Premium Partners Datacom.
Here's some photos from the 2016 awards evening:
We're always on the lookout for team mentors, so get in touch if you're interested.
TechHub Careers Expo
ITP runs the annual TechHub Careers Expo in Christchurch, with over 600 students and their parents attending each year.
As well as 15-20 local industry and educational exhibitors, the Expo features presentations from several young IT professionals, including a keynote presentation (in 2016 this was Adrian Clark from HITLab who captivated the crowd with the work they're doing in Robotics and Virtual Reality (VR)).
The TechHub team also participates in several other career-oriented events across NZ each year.
TechHub getting results
Anecdotally, teachers tell us that far more students are going on to study in IT-related fields from schools participating in TechHub than those that aren't, with the greatest increase in academically "smart" kids who would otherwise go on to study law, accounting or engineering.
It gets even more interesting when looking at the hard data.
Overall tertiary enrolments since TechHub started
IT-related tertiary enrolments have continued to climb since TechHub (then ICT-Connect) kicked off. In 2016 there were 39,535 tertiary students studying IT-related fields, with the bulk of those (34,185) studying at NZQA Level 5 or above (leading onto the industry) and around 73% of these being domestic students. That's an extra 3000 students studying IT than in 2012.
Girls studying tech
With a strong TechHub focus on girls' schools, it's great to see far more diversification in tertiary enrolments since TechHub kicked off, with far more young women studying IT than ever before. While still not where we want it, we're now seeing 35.4% of IT students being women - far better than what we were seeing just a few years ago. We're also seeing good improvements in Maori and Pacifica enrolments.
Obviously TechHub can't claim all the credit for these changes, however it's a large piece of the jigsaw that's seeing a big change in the numbers and types of people choosing to study towards a career in IT.
We're forever grateful to our amazing TechHub partners, who in many cases have supported the programme for years. While partners do get some promotional opportunities, most are supporting TechHub to make a real, grass-roots difference to kids on the ground. Current TechHub partners are:
If your company wants to be part of a programme with proven results making a real difference, drop us a note and we'll get in touch.
What they're saying at the grassroots
Here's a selection of the huge levels of positive feedback we get from schools participating in TechHub presentations:
Marie did a great job at discussing the opportunities in the industry and in addressing the various job roles she has had. This was really useful to the students as they could see that they would be training towards achieving skills that would allow for multiple career opportunities in the future. - Cashmere High School
John was really engaging our students…… it was a great presentation with lots of interesting points on how Technology is improving. - Papakura High School
Really really good - passionate about his subject and spoke at the right level for the students - Northcote College
Feedback from students and the teacher present was extremely positive. Good enthusiasm and pitched it at the right level - Northcote College
Lots of exciting work experience to share. Was great to have a female role model from the field - Kavanagh College
Graham was an awesome presenter. He was engaging with the students and allowed interaction. Well prepared, on time, enthusiastic. Overall, a great presenter! - Linwood College
Really interesting and good response from students. They enjoyed the general info on technology and the realistic discussion about the future of tech. - Chiilton St James
The speaker was enthusiastic, and spoke confidently about the variety of career opportunities there are within IT, as well as many other benefits. They provided insight as to the range of different areas to work in, and also the industries you can work for if you have IT skills. The speaker was also willing to answer any questions at the end of the talk. - Westlake Girls High School
This was a really good global picture of IT and the digital world. - Massey High School
Neat to listen and talk to. Inspirational. Friendly and enjoyed chatting to the students. Answered all questions with ease. - Havelock North High School
John had a great presentation / interaction with the students around how careers and skills will and do change. - Orewa College
Awesome:) Students and teachers found the presentation very valuable and good links made to tertiary and career pathways. - St Bernards College
Well-presented and interesting content. The presentation was well received by the students. Good balance between 'programming' and the multitude of other aspects of the IT industry. Income level potential certainly got their attention!! - St Bedes College