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Leonardo Cyber Apprentices: The Bristol workshop that is addressing the Cyber Boom skills gap

The cyber industry is booming, but Bristol students still aren’t aware there is huge demand for cyber experts of the future, so Leonardo Cyber Apprentices have created an unforgettable workshop to place cyber careers firmly in students’ imaginations.

As soon as students arrived at the Leonardo workshop at a recent Unlock Cyber Taster Day at the University of the West of England, they had to step over police tape and pick up crime detection kits, after being handed special jumpsuits so they didn’t disturb the scene before them. Were there fingerprints on the laptop? What approach had the cyber-criminal used to hack the account? Suddenly students became cyber detectives empowered to answer these questions themselves through deduction.

This activity helped students think about how they can better protect themselves and their families from cyber-crime. Their participation in the workshop served to overcame many of the preconceptions about cyber careers, since you don’t need to start out as a cyber-boffin.

Ben Waring, Leonardo Cyber Security HR and Resourcing Advisor said: “The event was a great success with almost 300 students from across the South West attending, over 60% of whom were girls. We delivered four workshops to the schools and a number of teachers have asked whether we would consider visiting their schools to deliver the Leonardo Crime Scene activity to larger groups of students. We are really excited about the prospect of rolling this out on a larger scale as the response has been so positive.”