UWE student volunteers are national digital champions

Issue date: 11 May 2011


Five students from the University of the West of England who are helping to close the national digital divide have been chosen to attend Digital Champions Day in London on 11 May.The second year students are all taking part in the government Race Online campaign by running a community internet training project for older people.

The students are all studying for a degree in Information Technology Management for Business (ITMB) which is offered at only 13 Universities in the UK, including UWE. Digital Champions day is organised by e-skills UK and the Race Online 2012 team as part of National Digital Conference 2011.

Senior lecturer Dr Kevin Doyle from UWE said, “The students have been invited in recognition of the role that they are playing in the community as Digital Champions. It also celebrates their outstanding achievement in winning both of the bi-annual prizes for idea progression awarded by e-skills UK and the Information Technology Management for Business employers' strategy forum.

“The UWE students will be acting as ambassadors for the ITMB community and as representatives of the 13 universities offering the award endorsed by e-skills UK.”

UWE's BSc(Hons) Information Technology Management for Business (ITMB) degree has been developed in conjunction with e-skills UK who work on behalf of employers to ensure the UK has the technology skills it needs to succeed in a global digital economy. eskills' work covers software, internet and web, IT services, telecommunications and business change. UWE was selected in 2006 from just a handful of universities across the UK to run the course in the South West of England.

The 6th National Digital Conference on 11 and 12 May at Old Billingsgate is the largest gathering and online participation to date of partners across the UK who want to work together to inspire, encourage and support millions more people online. The event will address how to build a fully 'networked nation' in terms of society, economy and the latest technology, through partnership with Government, industry, charities and individuals.

The opening day of the conference is focusing on getting all UK citizens online and will celebrate the efforts of over 1,200 Digital Champions who are inspiring many more people to use and benefit from the internet.

UK Digital Champion, Martha Lane Fox, speaking at the conference said, “It's really inspiring to see the work that the Leading Edge team has been doing to help people in their communities get online. I hope their initiative at the University of the West of England sets an example to other students across the country and encourages them to volunteer as digital champions. By mobilising the student population to get involved with Race Online 2012 and its partner organisations, we will be well on our way to creating a truly remarkable digital UK where the internet is a tool that everybody can use.”

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