The BTG ICT Cadet Program exists to train, inspire, and prepare future IT gurus without the hefty student loan attached.
Did you know that as at 30 June 2015 728,348 students had a student loan with Inland Revenue to secure their tertiary education? You may think this has nothing to do with IT, customers, better solutions or innovation. To us at BTG, it absolutely does. The BTG ICT Cadet Program is creating opportunities for the future of IT starting from high school. We like to think of it as a way of paying it forward.
We hear far more talk of cadetships within the trade industry, but what about IT? An industry that moves so quickly through the paces requires smart-thinking individuals adaptable to new technologies.
“By the time students go into a university course, the course is already 5 years out of date. Within the IT industry, university programs just can’t keep up with relevant trends.” Steve Harris, Director.
While the intention for this program was always there, the whole way it happened was by accident, and what a fantastic accident it was. The first cadet, from Tuakau College, is coming into his final year now. The program is coming into its fifth year and is proving extremely successful, both for cadets and BTG.
How it works:
BTG began letting schools know about the program as an option for avid IT students; namely Tuakau College, Selwyn College, and Howick College – local schools. They advise principals, IT teachers and career management staff are aware of the option.
The program exists for students who have a huge interest in IT infrastructure specifically and want to enter the industry but wouldn’t have otherwise had the opportunity.
Initial application > Work Experience Interview > 5 day work experience > Formal interview with candidate and parent > Employment contract and job offer
BTG interviews between June and October, November they find out if they’ve been successful or not, and then they start the following February.
- 5 days pay, work 4, includes one day per week for tertiary study.
- All the usual holiday and sick day entitlements of all other employees.
- First year – one on one training with Steve Harris one day per week.
- 4 years cadetship plus an additional 4 years as a qualified engineer.
- All the other trimmings like access to vendor sponsored training & qualifications, personalised mentoring and technical training programs, in-house IT knowledge & experience.
The first cadet is coming out of the program with absolutely no student loan, he’s a qualified engineer, he’s had his tertiary training, he has money in the bank, a nice car, and is thinking about saving over the next few years for international travel. Starting at age 17, this young man now has a few years of commercial experience under his belt, as opposed to being in his mid-twenties when he gets out of university and requiring another 2 ½ years training.