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Posted on April 20, 2018 by staff

Digital Advantage boosts digital skills in Lancashire

Teachers and students from across Lancashire have been boosting their digital know-how as part of a project to bridge the skills gaps in the sector.

Digital Advantage is an initiative for 16-18-year-olds, which has been developed by working with industry leaders from trade association Digital Lancashire, to help students improve their digital skills, knowledge and experience.

To mark their achievements, over 200 people attended a special graduation and pitch event at County Hall on Friday 20 April.

During a five-day session held at 11 schools and colleges across Lancashire, Digital Advantage helped students to gain more understanding about digital businesses, and find out how to get into the industry.

Industry trainers took them through a programme to develop a prototype digital business, create a three-minute film and pitch it to an industry panel.

Through the programme, students develop the skills needed in the digital sector – web design, software development, digital marketing, social media, branding, content creation, project management and e-commerce.

Mark Thwaite, head of communications for Digital Lancashire, is also chair of the judging panel, which includes people working in the sector.

He said: “Digital Lancashire’s mission is to help to accelerate the regional digital economy. Having the right talent with the right skills is central to that aim. Digital Advantage is a key part of how we help to deliver this.

“Together with the communication skills and confidence to get one of the hundreds of apprentice positions being created across Lancashire, this programme has led to increased demand from schools wanting to take part.”

Michael Green, cabinet member for economic development, environment and planning, added: “We are proud to support this project, as it’s helping young people to improve their digital skills and giving them a platform to practise and showcase their talents.

“It’s vital for future economic growth that we equip people with the skills that companies need. Digital Advantage aims to support this by getting young people to work on their digital skills through useful practical sessions.”

Digital Advantage is supported by Lancashire Skills and Employment Hub, which is part of the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership (LEP). It is funded by Lancashire County Council and the Careers Enterprise Company.