Diversity Essential in IT Sector
11 December 2019
21-year-old Angus Fenn is following in his father’s footsteps and making his way in the IT industry, despite being hearing impaired, by providing IT services at a school for the deaf community.
An incident when Angus was a baby, resulted in the loss of the vibrating bones in his ear, which left Angus partially deaf and very sensitive to loud noises.
With this restriction Angus felt that university was not going to be an option as they did not have the appropriate support available.
It was not until he visited his careers councillor at Selwyn College, that he learnt of Techtorium, a leading provider of Computer Engineering and Software Development courses where there is an emphasis on the individual needs of the student.
Whilst studying at Techtorium, Angus completed an internship at New Era IT and now after graduating, has been working there for over a year.
New Era IT provides IT support for schools and educational organisations across New Zealand. Angus has been based at Kelston Deaf Education Centre, that provides state funded education to students who are hearing impaired.
Techtorium’s Industry Pathways Manager, Lyall Haselton, said Angus’s story is an example of the diversity the company is encouraging in the IT sector by providing support for people along with individual attention.
“We also play a very active role in encouraging young women to pursue a career in IT. In a sector that is booming women are in the minority, occupying only 23% of professional IT roles overall.”
Lyall’s view is supported by Techtorium alumna and Senior Technician at New Era IT, Ginny Hastelow who says a career in IT is a viable and exciting option for young women.
“Techtorium walked us through everything we needed to know beyond IT skills, such as how to write our CVs, how to communicate in the workplace, how to dress, how to highlight our key skills and even how to shake hands properly! They were with us every step of the way until we landed the job” she says.
Recognising the large number of students who gain employment at New Era IT, Techtorium and New Era Technology have collaborated to set up an internship programme.
The internship collaboration involves Techtorium students working at New Era IT for 9 weeks whilst studying.
Kate Finlayson from New Era IT says they are thrilled to be able to set up a programme that will provide the necessary experience and exposure for the students.
“We look for job-ready graduates when hiring and Techtorium has consistently provided promising candidates in the past”, Kate says.