HomeNewsCybersecurity diploma searches for partnerships while helping to fill digital skills gap

Cybersecurity diploma searches for partnerships while helping to fill digital skills gap

By UCOL on Wednesday, 12 October 2022

UCOL Te Pūkenga ICT students in class.

Ākonga (learners) looking to build their cybersecurity skills can now do so at UCOL Te Pūkenga, with UCOL’s first group of ākonga for the New Zealand Diploma in Cybersecurity Level 6 nearing completion of the course.

Information Technology (IT) - and in particular cybersecurity skills - are in demand right now throughout New Zealand.
Paula Richardson, ICT Lecturer says by offering this diploma, UCOL Te Pūkenga are helping to fill the current digital skills gap. One of the papers in the qualification is a cybersecurity project which also enables the programme to include workplace experience.
“As we looked to introduce the diploma, we engaged with our stakeholders to ensure the local industry need was there. ManawaTech in particular were exceptionally keen to see this course available here, so it’s clear that we already have strong support from the local IT industry and would love to welcome additional providers who can provide cybersecurity internship opportunities for our ākonga and build a partnership with us.” 
“We’re also really pleased to be able to teach this programme with a blended delivery approach. This method includes classes being live streamed as well as recorded allowing ākonga to watch them again. We’ve even been able to accommodate ākonga in Australia which has been great and a real acknowledgement of our flexibility and future-focussed learning methods,” says Richardson.
Te Pūkenga are working on increasing the wider industry support of the diploma by engaging with the public sector further and are holding drop-in sessions for those interested in providing internships to learn more about the workplace experience of this diploma. These sessions are being held with involvement from the National Cyber Policy Office as part of efforts to grow New Zealand’s cyber talent pipeline.
Dila Beisembayeva - Senior Implementation Lead (Micro-Credentials) at Te Pūkenga says these sessions have been designed to encourage an increase of partnerships with the government agencies across the country.
“As we receive feedback from ākonga and industry stakeholders, we’re adapting to meet the needs of the digital industry and we’re hoping the sessions will lead to more internships and consequently employment opportunities for ākonga across Aotearoa,” says Beisembayeva.
The year-long programme is primarily aimed at those with a background in technology.
“Ākonga who enrol in this course will likely have a Level 5 Diploma in IT or completed the first year of an IT degree, or have workplace experience,” Richardson explains.
“We’re pleased to be able to adapt to the dynamic digital industry as we receive feedback from our ākonga and industry stakeholders to ensure we’re meeting their future needs.”
IT businesses that are interested in providing internship opportunities and developing a partnership with
UCOL Te Pūkenga can get in touch with Paula, by emailing P.Richardson@ucol.ac.nz.