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Basingstoke College of Technology (BCoT) has partnered with a pioneering group of colleges and universities in the Enterprise M3 area to launch Innovation South Virtual Campus (ISVC) - a brand new range of free online courses to help employers fill digital skills gaps in their businesses for free.
This ground-breaking project aims to transform access to vital work-focused training such as cyber security and digital skills across the region. Funded by the Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) Enterprise M3, ISVC’s skills-focused, bite-sized range of programmes have been designed to upskill and re-skill employees in businesses of all sizes, without a cost to them or their employees.
The group; including Sparsholt College, BCoT, and Royal Holloway University, working with colleagues from East Surrey College and Chichester University; has developed an online platform to deliver blended vocational learning to employees.
The ‘virtual campus’ offers a skills-focused range of short programmes, giving individuals the opportunity to learn a new skill and become an expert in a specific field without the need to take a whole qualification at every level. The range of short courses has been chosen based on research that has highlighted digital skills in businesses that may be missing or are highly sought after. This covers key areas such as Digital Marketing, Competitor Analysis, and IT Skills including software development and cyber security. Varying levels of each course are offered to suit each learner’s current skillset and experience.
BCoT Principal, Anthony Bravo, said: "This is a really important collaboration and I'm excited about the new courses that we are able to offer by working with EM3 and our education partners. As a college that works closely with local employers, we have seen a range of sectors and businesses suffering from the effects of lockdown while also seeing a rise in learners signing up for our distance learning courses. This project is a natural extension of that work, offering higher level, digitally focused, online programmes. As well as supporting businesses to upskill their workforce, we are also helping people to gain new skills who may be thinking of a career change or needing to retrain following redundancy at this difficult time."
Employees can create an account, browse the range of courses on offer and sign-up for an online programme here: https://isl.skillset.co.uk/