Do you want to help inspire the next generation tech professionals?

The Australian Mathematics Trust is on the lookout for ICT professionals or graduate students interested in participating as mentors in its 2019 ICT Summer Schools initiative (digIT).

DigIT is a government-funded training program targeted at students in years 9 and 10, with the goal of improving digital literacy around the country by introducing students to workshops in coding, robotics and game design.

By targeting capable students from groups underrepresented in the ICT space, digIT is helping bridge Australia’s digital divide.

CEO of the Australian Mathematics Trust, Nathan Ford, explained how the initiative benefits both the students and the mentors.

“Many digIT students have never had an opportunity to take part in a mentorship program. It gives students exposure to the varied and exciting futures that ICT fields can offer and gives ICT professionals the opportunity to contribute to the education the next generation,” he said.

“Our mentors love guiding the talented students and enriching their ICT experience.”

The 2019 program will see 60 students from WA and SA take part in a summer residential camp (14-18 January) and a winter camp (15-18 July) at the University of Western Australia.

The mentoring program will be ongoing between January and July, allowing the students to continue to develop their ideas and explore new concepts with their mentors between camps.

Mentors will work with the students on projects, as well as discussing possible study options and career pathways.

The 2018 initiative saw one student from rural Tasmania, who was not initially considering a career in ICT, create a pharmacy app.

The student was recently named the ‘Young Engineer 2018’ as part of the Tasmanian Science and Engineering Awards.

“I think it is really fulfilling to help a young person learn and develop new skills,” said a mentor from the 2018 program. “I got a lot of enjoyment in seeing how excited they were to share their progress with me and I got to watch them build confidence along the way.”

Return flights or bus travel to Perth for the summer and winter camps will be provided by the Australian Mathematics Trust for the mentors.