Cracking the code

Article image - Cracking the code Recently 26 local businesses, organisations and individuals were recognised by the state as Community Digital Champions in the Sunshine Coast.

Local residents of Sunshine Coast Council in Queensland are being encouraged to learn about coding and programming to increase economic opportunities in the region.

Regional Development Australia Sunshine Coast (RDASC) has created a cluster involving TAFE Queensland East Coast, Sunshine Coast Council and industry representatives to develop and deliver an ‘Introduction to Coding’ course for locals who wish to develop and improve their skills.

Chief Executive Officer of RDASC, Darrell Edwards, said the course aimed to address a need to improve coding and programming skills on the Sunshine Coast.

“This is a great example of how people and organisations with common goals can work collaboratively to deliver solutions to community issues.

“The engagement with industry representatives was important to ensure that the course delivers the skills that industry desires and was a pathway to employment.”

Economic Development Portfolio Councillor Stephen Robinson said the six-week course would provide participants with the basics of programming languages, how to use various frameworks to develop coding, and how to incorporate programming into various platforms.
“Knowledge and Professional Services is one of seven high-value industries within the Sunshine Coast Regional Economic Development Strategy (REDS) that are identified as the keys to future employment and economic strength in our region,” Cr Robinson said.

“So a key priority for council is supporting courses and initiatives like this one as well as Digital Sunshine Coast, the Mayor’s Telstra Technology Awards, CoderDojo and the Startup Weekends, all of which encourage individuals of all ages and businesses in our region to adopt new and innovative technologies which will be so important for their future success.

“The Sunshine Coast was recently named as one of the world’s Smart21 Communities for 2017 for our application of digital technology and for effective leadership and collaboration in developing economic opportunities leading to jobs, investment and social development.

“We also had 26 local businesses, organisations and individuals recognised by the state as Community Digital Champions. So this course is a great opportunity for more Sunshine Coasters to acquire the knowledge and develop very important skills.”

TAFE Queensland East Coast Creative and Digital Teacher Angela Lisle said there’s never been a better time to start a career in the growing IT industry.

“People with qualifications, skills and knowledge in the Information Communication Technology (ICT) sector are currently in high demand,” Ms Lisle said.

“The programming skills learnt at TAFE are transferrable across a range of industries and can literally take you anywhere. Graduates could easily find themselves working in industries like agriculture or health – industries that they may never have even imagined themselves working in.

“The Introduction to Coding Short Course is perfect for students who are curious about how code works and how it can be embedded into platforms such as mobile apps, web-based applications and gaming.”