IBM, Charles Sturt University team up to build tech skills in regional NSW

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IBM, Charles Sturt University team up to build tech skills in regional NSW

IBM Australia has partnered with Charles Sturt University to establish new career pathways for graduates and speed up digital skills development across regional New South Wales through a new program and facility.

IBM will build a new Client Innovation Centre (CIC) in Bathurst and offer scholarships to Charles Sturt students to allow them to take part in industry work experience at the centre.

The CIC aims to employ some 300 staff to support IBM client demand across Australia, delivering technical expertise and skills in areas such as data science, cybersecurity, AI and hybrid cloud.

IBM will also co-develop courses at Charles Sturt, specifically those focused on cybersecurity, data and digital services.

IBM ANZ managing director Katrina Troughton said the digital skills crisis in Australia, which has been exacerbated by the impacts of COVID-19, demanded new ways of approaching skilling and hiring. This includes expanding and developing ‘pools of potential' across regional Australia, as well as providing students first-hand experience working with industry on real-world challenges.

“Students today must have digital acumen and literacy to be able to fully contribute to and participate in tomorrow’s digital economy. Industry-academic partnerships, such as the one we are co-creating with Charles Sturt University, and other higher learning institutions across Australia, are key to providing deeper, more relevant experience that will better equip students to enter today’s workforce,” Troughton said.

“We know diversity of thought fuels innovation and ultimately the advancement of Australia's societal and economic growth. That is why the diversity of the Bathurst and Charles Sturt University community is so important to IBM.

“By building and developing diverse and regional talent pools we can help to address the nation’s critical tech skills gap and drive Australia’s economic recovery.”

IBM said the partnership was modelled after a similar program with Federation University in regional Victoria, which dates back to the 1990s.

Charles Sturt University vice chancellor Renee Leon said the partnership was indicative
of the University’s commitment to collaborate with industry, government and the community.

“This is a historic partnership for regional NSW, one which will create a wealth of opportunities for Charles Sturt University’s students, teaching staff and researchers, as well as the regional communities we proudly support,” Leon said.

“Through this partnership there will be scholarships and work placements available to students, ensuring Charles Sturt University’s IT and business graduates will be among the most skilled and sought-after in Australia.

“I want to thank IBM Australia for their collaboration in seeking to establish this partnership,
which is evidence of how Charles Sturt University is advancing the careers of our students,
inspiring impactful research and driving regional outcomes with global impact.”

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