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Micro-credentials to address New Zealand’s cybersecurity skills shortage


Research done by a technology giant and two New Zealand universities may have found the potential answer to the country’s cybersecurity skills shortage, according to a recent report.

The University of Waikato, Victoria University of Wellington and Cisco are putting a fresh focus on the problem and found that the worldwide success of micro-credentials is due to the partnerships between tertiary institutions and industry.

Micro-credentials are ways for people to validate their skills and knowledge with qualifications.

Since micro-credentials are being delivered with a trend towards credit-bearing qualifications, it could be advantageous for New Zealand to follow suit.

Education is a continuous process in IT and micro-credentials provide an excellent way to upskill in highly specialised areas of technical knowledge, such as cybersecurity.

It really does make sense for New Zealand universities to partner with organisations in order to deliver these courses.

The country has the educational and research expertise and the organisations have the state of the art technical knowledge to guarantee that what is offered is exactly what the employers are looking for.

The research supports widespread evidence that there is a growing need for cybersecurity specialists. Now industry is responding by developing a system that can help fill the skills gap.

Moreover, micro-credentials enable students to upskill quickly in areas that are most relevant to their careers.

At the moment, there is a lot of interest at the postgraduate level. Mature students appreciate being able to access education in ‘bite sized chunks’ to fit in with their busy lifestyles.

Research has also shown that it is significant for organisations to support areas of national importance such as cybersecurity.

The tech giant’s vision is to work alongside government and education providers to help meet those skills shortages and challenges facing the growing digital economy.

The company is using its force to help cybersecurity to be positioned as a national priority and says it is committed to education and skill development in this area.

The company already offers education and skill development to students worldwide. Currently more than 400 New Zealand students have trained through their cybersecurity services.

The company’s Networking Academy is now on its 20th year and offers an IT skills and career-building programme for both learning institutions and individuals.

In an increasingly digital economy, there is unprecedented global demand for cybersecurity knowledge and skills.

The cybersecurity courses of the company’s Networking Academy help to upskill individuals to build the workforce of tomorrow.

The program has reached 9.26 million students in 190 countries across the globe.

In New Zealand, the company has partnered with colleges, universities, vocational schools, public sector and non-profits across the country and has enabled over 27,600 students to gain access to industry-relevant ICT skills.

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