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Declassified: cyber security recruitment fair takes to the road

CyberFirst bursary students shown the varied career opportunities within the cyber security community.

Future cyber experts have been shown how they could shape a career in national security today (Friday 13th September), at a first-of-its-kind GCHQ recruitment fair.

Around 50 of the UK’s leading cyber security employers across government and industry gathered at Nottingham Trent University for the newly declassified event held by the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), a part of GCHQ.

It is the first time a recruitment fair for cyber security professionals has been held outside of the intelligence agency’s base in Cheltenham, and was exclusive to students on the NCSC’s CyberFirst Bursary scheme.

A CyberFirst Bursary offers undergraduates £4,000 per year financial assistance and paid cyber security training each summer to help kick start their career in cyber. There are no restrictions to the type of degree applicants study in order to be eligible.

Chris Ensor, NCSC Deputy Director for Skills and Growth, said:

“Our digital world is ever-evolving and increasing and diversifying the cyber security talent pipeline has never been more important.

“Whether working within government, industry or intelligence and national security, we all have a part to play in making the country the hardest possible target for attackers.

“We’re delighted by the number of students who’ve come to see what a challenging, yet rewarding, career cyber security can offer and would encourage even more to consider following in their footsteps.”

Attendees were shown the varied career opportunities within the cyber security community and given a chance to demonstrate their talents to prospective employers, as well as find out more about their organisations.

Applications for the CyberFirst Bursary and Degree Apprenticeship are now open for the September 2020 intake. More information on how to apply can be found on the GCHQ recruitment website.

Notes to editors

Companies in attendance included:

Accenture, Airbus CyberSecurity, AJ Bell, Atkins, BAE Systems - Applied Intelligence, Bank of England, Becrypt, BT Security, Capita Plc, CGI, Context IS, Cyphra, Defence Science and Technology Laboratory, Deloitte LLP, Department for Work and Pensions, GCHQ & NCSC, Government Security Profession, HMGCC, IBM, Illuminate Technologies, ITC Secure, KPMG LLP, Lloyds Banking Group, Lockheed Martin, Metropolitan Police Service, Microsoft, Ministry of Defence, National Crime Agency, NATS, NCC Group, Netcraft, Nexor, NHS Digital, Northern Ireland Civil Service, Northrop Grumman, Palo Alto Networks, QA Ltd, QinetiQ, Raytheon UK, Reliance acsn, Roke, Standard Chartered, Tesco Plc, Thales UK, Think Marble Limited, Ultra Electronics, Communication & Integrated Systems, Visa, Vodafone, West Midlands Police, Zaizi

About CyberFirst:

  • CyberFirst is a flagship element of National Cyber Security Programme (NCSP) funded work to develop the UK’s cyber skills.
  • It began life as a GCHQ student sponsorship scheme designed to identify and nurture exceptional young talent from the broadest range of backgrounds to support the UK’s national security needs in cyberspace.
  • CyberFirst Bursary students receive a bursary of £4,000 per year. Each summer, students complete either training at a CyberFirst Academy or an 8-week training placement with the NCSC, a government body or an industry partner. Upon completion of degree studies, the NCSC aims to place students in a paid cyber security role within UK national security, government or industry.
  • A CyberFirst Degree Apprenticeship allows undergraduates to earn whilst they learn, ready for a job with GCHQ.
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