WMCA launches digital skills bootcamps with £21m funding for West Midlands

The West Midlands Combined Authority has launched a new, three-year round of digital bootcamps.

Armed with £21m funding to improve the digital capabilities of residents, the bootcamps are free of charge for learners and equip West Midlands residents with digital skills, enabling them to access roles in areas like coding, cybersecurity and digital marketing. 

They support the unemployed, those seeking a career change, as well as employed people looking to gain the digital skills required to secure more responsibility or a promotion with their current employer.

Through a £7m grant, the WMCA has so far piloted over 30 digital bootcamps, training around 2,000 adults who were unemployed or in low-paid jobs with vital tech skills. 

£21m has been made available from the Adult Education Budget to support the new bootcamps over the next three years, with a target of helping more than 4,000 people. These will run from November 2021 to October 2024.

Andy Street, mayor of the West Midlands and WMCA chair, said: “Re-training and upskilling have such critical roles to play in our region’s economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.

“We know that training in the skills of the future that employers want and need is a crucial way to help people bounce back into employment quickly, and technology is an area of huge employment possibilities that we must help people get the right skills in.”

The 10 providers selected to deliver WMCA digital bootcamps are: Generation You Employed; University of Birmingham; School of Code; Tech Talent; Capita; The Skills Network; LEAD; Resume Foundation; Twin Training International; and Code Your Future.

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