Digital Futures Programme

With the rapid digital transformation of business, communities and society, the data centre sector is experiencing rapid growth, and is facing an on-going skills shortage.

The Digital Futures programme will train young people as engineers to build out the digital highways to enable the world to communicate securely, and at speed.

Data Centres require engineers with mechanical and electrical engineering skills, knowledge of IoT devices and cabling infrastructure, and project management.

This exclusive programme will provide young people with the opportunity to start training for a world-class career, in a course designed by some of the industry’s biggest companies.

The Programme

The annual Digital Futures Programme intake is limited to 100 students at age 14, and 150 students studying the Level 3 engineering curriculum. Younger students will compete in industry-led Challenge Days, develop employability skills and receive masterclasses to bring subjects to life, alongside studying for their GCSEs. Meanwhile older students will complete team projects within the curriculum and benefit from building impactful relationships with industry professionals.
Programme format
Our industry partners will all provide elements of the Digital Futures Programme, which is embedded into our core engineering curriculum. The programme will incorporate:

Year 10-11

CoTeach Lessons – masterclasses delivered by industry partners in the curriculum

CoTeach Workshops – training delivered by industry partners to develop key employability skills Challenge Days – drop down days where students work in teams alongside industry partners

Year 12-13

CoTeach Projects – specialist activities within the engineering curriculum delivered by industry partners to provide contextual learning and an in-depth understanding of the data centre environment

CoTeach Workshops – activities delivered by industry partners to help students to develop the employability skills needed in the world of work

Pipeline Programme – work placements with industry partners to develop the skills needed for world-class careers. Critically this also enables students to make a great impression with potential employers and to learn more about the careers available in the data centre industry

What will it lead to?

Students will leave UTC Heathrow with a BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate/Diploma/Extended Diplomas in Engineering and/or A levels in STEM. On completion of the Digital Futures Programme, students will have:

  • Completed multiple projects led by employers within the specialist technical pathway
  • Undertaken work placements
  • Built relationships with leading industry partners to create opportunities for careers, either as apprentices or as graduates following university

Here’s what we’ve been doing

AWS CASE STUDY

CNET CASE STUDY

Digital Futures Articles

Data Centre World 2024 – the highlights!

Data Centre World 2024 – the highlights!

ALET UTCs & Partners had an amazing time at Data Centre World, one of the world’s biggest gatherings of digital infrastructure professionals, which took part at ExCeL London on 6-7 March. As well as showing off our amazing Digital Futures Programme and introducing...

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ALET UTCs & Partners named Best Talent Developer

ALET UTCs & Partners named Best Talent Developer

Trust scoops award for digital curriculum at Data Centre World An education project designed to aid social mobility and address a chronic skills gap in the digital infrastructure sector has won an award for the second consecutive year. ALET UTCs & Partners won the...

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Lord Baker to open VIP Student Zone at Data Centre World

Lord Baker to open VIP Student Zone at Data Centre World

The 'driving force' behind the UTC movement, The Rt. Hon Lord Kenneth Baker, will officially open ALET UTCs & Partners VIP Student Zone at Data Centre World on Wednesday 6 March. The VIP Student Zone at Data Centre World is being hosted by the ALET & Partners...

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Digital Realty joins Digital Futures Programme

Digital Realty joins Digital Futures Programme

We are delighted to welcome Digital Realty to our unique education/industry partnership, the Digital Futures Programme. Digital Realty joins eight leading employers from the digital infrastructure sector as a trust partner on the Digital Futures Programme, which...

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Blazing a trail at LMG

Blazing a trail at LMG

A graduate of the Digital Futures Programme is not only showing she has ‘everything it takes to be an amazing engineer’ but is also teaching her mentor to be better at his own job – an unforeseen benefit of taking on an apprentice! Ruqayyah Maqsood is one of three UTC...

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Digital Futures shortlisted for industry award

Digital Futures shortlisted for industry award

UTC Heathrow and Partners have been shortlisted! Following our win last year, UTC Heathrow and Partners is delighted to be shortlisted for the Education and Employment Project Award in the prestigious DataCloud Global Awards 2023! The winner will be announced at an...

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Addressing the skills shortage

Addressing the skills shortage

  ALET's Mike Halliday was delighted to be asked to speak about the skills shortage facing the digital infrastructure sector at the Data Centre Review's Critical Insight virtual conference on 30 November. Listen to what he had to say about the issue, and what UTC...

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Hear from our Partners

CNet Training

CNet Training is recognised throughout the world for being the global industry leader and the only industry dedicated education provider to award both internationally recognised qualifications and professional certifications, starting at qualification level 3 through to a level 7 Masters Degree in Data Centre Leadership and Management. A significant part of CNet Training’s history is the development of the highly acclaimed Global Digital Infrastructure Education Framework, which allows individuals to plan data centre knowledge and skills progression, qualifications and certifications to meet individual career aspirations.

VIRTUS Data Centres

VIRTUS Data Centres (VIRTUS), London’s leading data centre company and part of ST Telemedia Global Data Centres (STT GDC), builds and operates the UK’s most efficient facilities which underpin the UK’s digital economy.

VIRTUS has over a decade of experience designing and operating cutting-edge data centres in London’s metro. Over the years, it has built a strong reputation for providing Operational Excellence and delivering robust, complex solutions for the most demanding Global customers. It is home to large and small enterprises, global hyperscale cloud customers, banks, charities, universities and technology start-ups.

CyrusOne

CyrusOne (NASDAQ: CONE) is a premier global REIT specializing in design, construction and operation of more than 50 high-performance data centers worldwide. The Company provides mission-critical facilities that ensure the continued operation of IT infrastructure for approximately 1,000 customers, including approximately 200 Fortune 1000 companies.

A leader in hybrid-cloud and multi-cloud deployments, CyrusOne offers colocation, hyperscale, and build-to-suit environments that help customers enhance the strategic connection of their essential data infrastructure and support achievement of sustainability goals. CyrusOne data centers offer world-class flexibility, enabling clients to modernize, simplify, and rapidly respond to changing demand. Combining exceptional financial strength with a broad global footprint, CyrusOne provides customers with long-term stability and strategic advantage at scale.

CRBE

The World’s Leading Full Service Data Centre Services Partner

CBRE Data Centre Solutions (DCS) delivers fully integrated real estate, facilities and technology solutions for data centre owners, occupiers and investors across the globe. As a dedicated business line within CBRE, DCS is dedicated to solving complex challenges within every stage of the data centre lifecycle. Whether you are looking to develop, build, buy, sell, or manage and modernise one data centre or an entire portfolio—DCS can help your priorities succeed with certainty.

700+ data centres managed including enterprise, colocation and hyperscale/ 50+ countries represented with a global network of deep experience/ $1.7B in transactions per year delivering proactive insights and expertise locally, regionally and globally.

Amazon Web Services

For over 15 years, Amazon Web Services has been the world’s most comprehensive and broadly adopted cloud offering.

AWS has been continually expanding its services to support virtually any cloud workload, and it now has more than 200 fully featured services for compute, storage, databases, networking, analytics, machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT), mobile, security, hybrid, virtual and augmented reality (VR and AR), media, and application development, deployment, and management from 81 Availability Zones within 25 geographic regions, with announced plans for 21 more Availability Zones and seven more AWS Regions in Australia, India, Indonesia, Israel, Spain, Switzerland, and the United Arab Emirates.

Millions of customers—including the fastest-growing startups, largest enterprises, and leading government agencies—trust AWS to power their infrastructure, become more agile, and lower costs. To learn more about AWS, visit aws.amazon.com.

LMG

Based in central London, with revenues of £35m, LMG has been providing ICT, facilities management and corporate real estate infrastructure services since 1986. Working across a wide range of industries including; financial services, technology, communications, government, hospitality and residential, we help global organisations plan, install and manage the smart building systems and infrastructure they need for inspirational workplaces, efficient data centres and connected homes.

Our data centre services include the design & build of landlord/operator areas with smart building technology, ICT infrastructure, audio-visual and electronic security systems, in addition to the fit-out of white space and provision of tenant support.

ARK Data Centres (Crown Hosting Data Centres Limited)

Crown Hosting Data Centres Limited is a unique joint venture between the Cabinet Office and Ark Data Centres dedicated to serving the Public Sector. Together we are the trusted partner of the UK Government delivering increased efficiency, improved value, and transparency of Data Centre Services.

Combined, we bring the Government assurance, integrity and capabilities of the Public Sector, unified with the speed of execution and flexibility of the Private Sector.

We offer all Public Sector organisations the same foundation to create and inspire change, opportunities to transform, move forward, consolidate infrastructure, and migrate to new platforms using a more efficient and cost-effective model.

Yondr

Yondr is a developer, owner operator and service provider of hyperscale data centres. The company’s mission is to meet growing businesses’ data centre capacity and technical real estate needs faster, more elegantly and with better performance outcomes than anyone else. As an organisation, Yondr self-funds, designs, delivers and operates hyperscale data centre facilities globally.

Kao Data

Founded in 2014, Kao Data develops and operates high performance data centres for advanced computing. With hyperscale-inspired facilities east and west of London, it provides enterprise, cloud, HPC and AI customers with a world-class home for their compute.

Kao Data is backed by leading international investors and our state-of-the-art, OCP-Ready and DGX-Ready data centres are designed, engineered and operated by one of the industry’s most respected teams.

With a combined footprint of 55MW, all utilising 100% renewable energy, Kao Data is trusted to house the most demanding compute infrastructure today, including NVIDIA’s Cambridge-1, the UK’s most powerful supercomputer.

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