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NCSC i100 projects

Staff deliver projects for the NCSC's program over the last year

Over the last year, staff from CACI’s Information Intelligence Group have been delivering i100 projects for the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) on a part-time basis as part of their CyberFirst Schools initiative.

The wider CyberFirst programme, led by the NCSC, is committed to creating a sustainable and diverse pipeline of talented young people for the cyber security industry. It covers a broad range of opportunities to help young people explore their passion for technology. There is currently a massive loss of potential students - 75% quit GCSE computer science at 14 years of age and this rises to 90% for girls. To reverse this trend, we need to get students excited about the increasing opportunities in the digital workplaces of tomorrow.

The NCSC is trialing volunteer posts as part of its i100 scheme. This initiative is designed to allow industry expertise to be shared by industry professionals with government. In the CyberFirst context, these are called CyberFirst Ambassadors.

CACI has been able to sponsor this work by releasing 2 staff, James Partridge and Rebekka Bishop from our Information Intelligence team, for 1 day per week over the last year. We did this because we believe in the i100's mission to encourage and enable collaboration between CyberFirst Schools and Industry and hope to help forge new relationships and inspire students to consider a career in the cyber security sector.

Through James and Rebekka's work alongside i100 colleagues from Cynam, we have forged new relationships for the CyberFirst team across Gloucestershire, linking industry with the i100 and connecting schools and colleges with us to help push the CyberFirst message. This included the development of a national resources website for all teachers and students to use, full of activities and inspirational stories.

We wanted to share some of these highlights:

  • The industry inspirational role models page shows just some of the different careers that we can support students in pursuing.
  • There are now key stage-specific resources that can be accessed from the CyberFirst Schools site directly. As well as these new resources, we have revamped our Cyber Crates tools for local schools. These now have year group specific videos and activities to match the curriculum and support schools with developing cyber skills as a part of their lessons.
  • 8 companies in our sector have signed up for the E-mentoring program that the team have set up, with 51 mentors available to connect with students and offer direct support and advice about careers in cyber - this tool will continue to be developed by the i100 team.
  • The team have continued to develop our Cyber TV channel with students able to interview people from industry whilst we have been unable to run direct events.
  • The restrictions over the last 12 months has not daunted the i100 Gloucestershire team who have remained dedicated to delivering a sustainable and replicable model for CyberFirst Schools that we can use moving forward. As we weren’t able to hold large events in schools, we have a Lockdown Guide online instead!

This is what the NCSC’s CyberFirst Educational lead had to share about our work:

The CyberFirst Ambassadors have proven to be a fantastic resource. Rebekka and James from CACI are extremely dedicated and believe in what we are trying to do - and that is so important.

They have built new initiatives and programs of work, such as the CyberFirstschools.co.uk  website, with all its myriad of features. The eMentoring and work experience option for students could become foundational to CyberFirst's future activity and could be scaled nationally. I can’t express how excited I am about this ground breaking initiative and all the wonderful work they do to inspire young students into further learning and careers in cyber security.

This is a team who are not done yet. We know there will be some more developments with the i100 scheme over the next few months.

If you would like to know more about becoming involved with CyberFirst Schools, email cfschools@ncsc.gov.uk.

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NCSC i100 projects

CACI IIG supports the NCSC's i100 program for Cyberfirst school's initiative.