Young people learn their technological skills on television, not at school
Consultancy Accenture conducted a survey of young people – Gen Z or those born in the 90s – and found that movies and social media have a greater influence on their understanding of working in the tech industry than school.
According to research, young people in the UK are less likely to get their information about technology careers from school and teachers than from social media, TV shows and movies.
Social media are the leading sources of information on career aspirations (31%), ahead of parents by a narrow margin (29%) and teachers by a larger margin (24%). Gen Z are more likely to learn about their future in tech in TV and movies (27%) than in school (19%).
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Is that a good thing or a bad thing, when you factor in shows like Mr Robot, which actually contained plausible hacker stories? It’s even guest antivirus companies to promote defenses against what the show’s main character, a hacker named Elliot, could realistically do. At the same time, high school students are avoiding ICT courses in the UK, reducing the supply of much needed skills in the workforce in the UK, US and elsewhere.
Cyber security is only part of the tech industry and job opportunities. Kids might be interested in science, economics, marketing, and purer technologies, which might make learning a specific programming language a good idea, like Python, MATLAB, or C.
Some students are turning to inexpensive single-board computers like the Raspberry Pi to learn about future careers in technology, exposing them to programming languages, network protocols, security, and the basic fact that computers need. human interfaces, such as graphics, touch / gestures, voice, a classic keyboard or a mouse.
Accenture surveyed 1,000 young Britons aged 16 to 21 about their career aspirations and long-term options. It found that 44% of young women said they had good digital skills, but only 40% of young men said they had them.
Despite this, less than a quarter of young people are confident in getting a tech job.
Shaheen Sayed, Chief Technology Officer for Accenture UK & Ireland, said: “If the digital native generation isn’t looking to technology as a career option, then we have a huge pipeline problem for the profession of technology. Young people know that technology is completely redefining the world right now – but their lack of confidence in getting a tech job indicates a worrying disconnect between young people, especially girls, and a changing job market. “
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Respondents who were interested in tech jobs said they would most likely choose jobs in AI, data analytics and cybersecurity. Which makes sense to an extent, given that these are the top three topics in online tech media right now.
“It is striking that young people are influenced more by digital channels than by their relationships at home and at school when choosing their next steps,” Sayed said.
“Career councils will need to meet young people where they are and paint a compelling picture of the skills required for today’s economy. Developing the next generation of tech talent takes more than just coding in the curriculum. Technology changes rapidly and topics must change. to equip young people with digital skills that will drive economic growth. Employers are looking for people to work with technologies, like AI, as they tackle global challenges like climate change and become more competitive. “