Specialisterne NI helps autistic young people with STEMLabs summer scheme

  • Specialisterne NI is running its STEMLabs summer scheme right now to help those with autism and aspergers break into the IT and tech industry.

    All of the major tech companies in Northern Ireland today recognise the need to invest in training the next generation of students early for the long-term sustainable health of IT and tech careers in the region. Companies such as Kainos and educational instutitions such as Belfast Met run dedicated summer camps to help point young people with an interest in tech in the right direction and equip them throughout their educational journey.

    This kind of support can prove difficult for those on the autistic spectrum or with specific communication needs to avail of, which is why this week Autism specialist Specialisterne NI has been running its own camp for techy young people. The STEMLabs programme has been taking place this week from August 12th to August 16th at the Specialisterne NI offices on the Newtownards Road in Belfast.

    Specialisterne NI works with local companies to help them recrut and support talented people with autism, aspergers, or communication differences that might otherwise make it difficult for them to enter the industry. Recruiters without the appropriate autism training can often overlook excellent candidates at the CV or interview stage, and Specialisterne works with firms to mitigate this problem.

    The programme was open to students aged 11-18 and has been sponsored by Bring IT On as well as local tech employers Kainos and Danske Bank. Participants have been building and programming Lego Mindstorms Robots, taking part in communications workshops to learn social strategies to help them in their careers, and meeting with representatives from Danske Bank, Kainos, AllState, and IBM.

    Source: Specialisterne

    About the author

    Brendan is a Sync NI writer with a special interest in the gaming sector, programming, emerging technology, and physics. To connect with Brendan, feel free to send him an email or follow him on Twitter.

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