Jon Mella, Ada’s new Student Attraction and Selection Officer, and I recently had the pleasure to visit the London Connected Learning Center (CLC) in Clapham and learned just how connected Ada are with their amazing team.
My initial connection was with Rowan Rogers, one of the CLC’s Teaching and Learning Consultants, whom I met on a National Centre for Computing Education (NCCE) facilitators training course. The NCCE wants to help change computing education across England. Ada staff, Steve Rich, Mark Campbell and I are currently training to deliver GCSE Computing CPD sessions for teachers whilst also hosting these sessions at the college, as is Rowan from the CLC.
Rowan put us in touch with Sarah, the CLC’s director, and Caitlin, a Teaching and Learning consultant who is leading the Tech Pathways project. Tech Pathways is aiming to bridge the digital skills gap between education and the 21st century job market, just like Ada is - a collaboration opportunity in the making! At Ada, we believe careers in the tech sector are an engine for social mobility and this brings us to another connection between Ada and London CLC - the amazing Bryan Mathers aka Visual Thinkery.
We found yet another connection between our organisations, proving the potential to collaborate and work together to make both of our visions a reality, namely that one of our first cohort of apprentices, Joe Halloran, previously worked for the London CLC.
As Joe explained,
"Like some Darwinian fallacy, I am the 'missing link' between London CLC and Ada. During my Software Engineering Apprenticeship, I was extremely fortunate to attend Ada to get a Foundation Degree in Digital innovation. Before my apprenticeship I spent 10 years working for London CLC where we helped Primary Schools to use technology to support learning.
These two organisations, Ada and London CLC, nurture the relationship between technology and learning. Both teams are bristling with innovators. Both harbour a healthy suspicion for fads and instead take a thoughtful and long-term view of technology and its role in our society. Both have young people, with all their energy and insight, at the heart of everything they do. I am lucky to be linked to these amazing organizations and lucky to know the amazing people who make it all happen."
I look forward to exploring ways that we can collaborate on a project that will make a difference to young people in London and the UK and to bring about, as CLC puts it, “Extraordinary learning with and about technology” and, as Ada puts it, “To empower all students, especially women and those from low-income backgrounds, to progress into highly skilled digital roles and lead flourishing lives.”