5000 students around the UK dial up their digital skills at BIMA Digital Day

15 Nov 2018

Posted by Rachel Johnson

- Less than half of 13-18-year-olds say they have any knowledge of the digital industry, says the UK’s digital trade body

 - 70% of teachers believe there is not enough focus on digital skills and learning in the curriculum.

- Out-of-date, theory-based curriculum turning young people off, says BIMA

- Partners Vodafone, BBC Studios and The FA, have set challenges with prizes for winning teams.

Some of the UK’s leading digital experts headed back to schools around the country this week to inspire future talent. Agencies and brands including SapientRazorfish, Shop Direct, Cancer Research UK, and Huge will run challenges to get 13-18 year olds hands-on with the future of digital.

Digital Day is an annual event from BIMA, the UK’s digital trade body. Its research* has found that only 41.5% of students have any knowledge of the potential for a career in the digital industry. After taking part in Digital Day, that response increased to 97.7%, of which, 72.6% said they'd be looking into learning digital skills after participating in Digital Day.

The survey also found that 70% of teachers believe there is not enough focus on digital skills and learning in the National Curriculum. Over 30% of students said they would change or would have chosen their subjects differently as a result of understanding more about a career in digital.

This year’s challenge partners are Vodafone, BBC Studios and The FA. BBC Studios is asking students for a big idea to promote its new digital-only series Earthlings; The FA wants an innovative idea to increase young girls’ engagement with football and boost viewership of the Lioness’ upcoming FIFA World Cup games; and Vodafone wants a VR or AR solution to change how we shop on the High Street. A winning team will be chosen for each brief in January, the prize will be £500 for the school and a workshop with one of the Challenge Partners.

Natalie Gross, BIMA Co-President says, “Young people continue to miss out on opportunities to have progressive, lucrative careers in the digital and technology sector, the fastest growing industry in Britain. This is because of an inadequate curriculum and a lack of awareness for the opportunities that are available. This lack of skills and lack of awareness is a lethal combination that will serve to stifle the growth of the British economy, at a time when we most need growth and confidence. We can change this trajectory. BIMA Digital Day is just one brilliant example of how a real difference can be made.”

*Survey conducted by BIMA of 2000 students and teachers who participated in BIMA Digital Day 2017. 

Rachel Johnson
Posted by Rachel Johnson

Rachel has recently joined BIMA having worked for more than 20 years in the world of Marketing. Rachel has many impressive client, charity and agency-side results to her credit and stories to tell. As both a team player and independent advisor, Rachel loves to see the bigger picture and is a strong strategic thinker. She has led ambitious projects for start-ups, worked alongside growing businesses and has been fortunate to work with some of the UK’s most respected and renowned agencies. A self-motivated original thinker, Rachel is also an extremely able marketer. She brings out the best in people at all levels. Her wealth of transferable skills includes project management – often with direct budgetary control - results-driven commercial awareness, proven networking strengths, digital marketing expertise and broad IT literacy. However, her achievements do not end there! In her spare time, she makes full-use of her Cumbrian home-town environment, walking, biking and running, and spending time as an enthusiastic side-line rugby and football mum for her two boys – Louie and Harley.

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