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Empowering Girls to Become Cyber Professionals
Josie Barclay
/ Categories: Academy News

Empowering Girls to Become Cyber Professionals

At the end of last year, twenty-seven Year 8 girls from Irlam and Cadishead Academy got the opportunity to attend the CyberFirst Empower North West event, held at the AJ Bell Stadium. 

CyberFirst is a programme of events designed to help young students explore their passion for technology by introducing them to the fast-paced world of cyber security. In particular, it aims to excite, inspire and educate girls about the skills and opportunities the cyber security and technology industry has to offer, seeking to minimise the gender gap that currently exists in these sectors. 

As part of the special day, Irlam students met with some of the largest and most successful tech organisations in the UK such as Microsoft, KPMG, GCHQ, Northrop Grumann. They enjoyed an immersive range of activities led by these experts from these organisations. Activities included a variety of interactive and engaging games and workshops as well as a keynote speech and closing ceremony led by inspirational women in STEM. 

They also got the chance to speak to representatives from universities offering STEM courses, as well as businesses from across the region, encouraging them to think about their future ambitions and the opportunities available to them. 

Maisie, a student at Irlam and Cadishead Academy, said: 

“I had a great day at the CyberFirst Empower event! I found it both inspiring and empowering. It has made me aware of the different careers surrounding computing and technology, which has made me think about my own future and the different paths available for me to take.” 

Toni Holdsworth, Principal at Irlam and Cadishead Academy, said: 

“This was an amazing experience for our Year 8 girls and a real opportunity to explore careers in cyber security and technology. At Irlam and Cadishead Academy, we are committed to giving our students the tools and knowledge they need to access to an exciting range of employment opportunities and, most importantly, showcase the future career paths available to them. We hope our magnificent girls are inspired to be the next generation of cyber-professionals!” 

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