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Update from ITPNZ

Paul Matthews. 15 May 2020, 2:48 pm
Update from ITPNZ

Here's a quick weekly update from ITP CEO Paul Matthews

Today is our last weekly Friday Live webinar and we're finishing the series off in style, with GCDO Paul James joining us to talk through tech's role in the Covid-19 response.

Also this week, Budget 2020 accelerates the Review of Vocational Education, ITP Fellow co-chairs big international review into tech degrees (your input needed please!), a new 5-point plan for digital inclusion and much more. 

Last Friday Live today: GCDO Paul James

We've thoroughly enjoyed bringing the weekly Friday Live Webinar to you over L4 and L3 lockdown, with some fantastic guests. Feedback has been almost universally positive and it's been a great way to keep everyone informed about lots of tech- and data-related perspectives of Covid-19 and the lockdown.

Today at 4pm we have the last presentation of the series, with Government Chief Digital Officer Paul James joining us to give a public sector perspective. He'll be talking about tech's role in the government response to date and what the future looks like.

You really should check this out - it'll be hugely interesting for everyone. It's also an awesome way to finish off the series, and as always, features our TechBlog crew first and plenty of time for Q&A with Paul James. Register here

We've consistently enjoyed audiences of several hundred participating live and thousands watching afterwards for these webinars and while it's the end of this weekly series, it's not the end of ITP webinars. We're kicking off a new ongoing fortnightly webinar series - more details next week.

Budget 2020: Acceleration of Review of Vocational Education

Most readers will know we've been heavily involved in the Review of Vocational Education, the big project that changes how education works in Institutes of Technology, Polytechs and private providers.

Part of the announcement yesterday was a significant acceleration of this project, including establishing the WDCs formally must faster than originally envisioned.

While we're excited to be picking up the pace and momentum with these, there is also a significant concern that haste will result in a sub-optimal outcome, especially to things like degree provision for our industry and the opportunity for more blended workplace-based learning as part of tech qualifications going forward.

We're continuing to push to ensure that the review helps our industry and doesn't end up damaging pathways into it. We'll be moving fast with this as well now, but will keep you informed through TechBlog and Newsline.

Other than RoVE, there isn't a huge amount for our industry in the budget but that's ok. Our industry is part of the solution but doesn't need to be singled out for special treatment when other industries are hurting more (as a whole). That's not to say individual companies and people aren't hurting in tech - I know they are. Some consultants, for example, have had a very rough time and we're discussing with MBIE how the All-of-govt consultancy panel can be revised and reopened to ensure plenty of opportunity going forward.

International review of tech-related degrees

The Computing Curricula 2020 (CC2020) is a joint project launched by professional computing bodies like ITP to examine the current curricular guidelines for academic degree programs in computing and provide a vision for the future of computing. 

It's exciting to report that this global initiative has been co-chaired by ITP Fellow Alison Clear who, along with a strong international taskforce of 50 people, have been working on this in-depth since 2017. A huge amount of work has gone into it.

They've now produced a draft report and need your input. This will help shape tech degree qualifications internationally for the next few years, so it's essential we all get this right. They're looking for feedback from everyone - industry, academia, students, etc.

More details on the draft report here, and the feedback form is here.

ITP supports 5-point digital inclusion plan

InternetNZ has coordinated a really good inclusion plan and put it to Government, with ITP and 20 other tech groups supporting it.

This is a really good plan for dealing with digital inclusion problems once and for all.

Read the plan here [pdf], or more info on TechBlog.

ITP in-school programmes still running well

ITP runs two main initiatives in schools, both under the general TechHub banner.

The first is TechHub Talks, where previously professionals visited schools to talk through what it means to work in tech - the opportunities, positive challenges, pay, etc. The second is 123Tech, New Zealand's in-school digital challenge for students.

Both have still been going full steam ahead despite the lockdown restrictions, with volunteers participating in both via videocalls. We're as excited as ever to continue running ITP's core in-school tech career evangelist programme that provides presentations to thousands of students across NZ every year, plus support the thousands of students who also take part in 123Tech each year.

Speaking of presenters, we are once again putting the call out to our community for presenters that can provide an engaging presentation with the goal of inspiring kids by introducing them to the depth of tech roles in New Zealand, and the opportunities the sector presents! Obviously in this current Covid landscape all presentations will be done via videocall, but it's still live and with really good engagement.

So if you have what it takes, find out more about volunteering at TechHub here, and 123Tech here.

Finally, programmes like this could not be possible without having the backing of some fantastic partners who have supported these initiatives for many years, including the two Premium partners:


You can see all industry partners here.

Professional Guidance Working Group - want to get involved?

We're still looking for volunteers to participate in the Professional Guidance Working Group - a really good chance to give back to the profession.

One of the roles of a professional body is providing guidance to IT Professionals about professional practice. In our case, this takes the form of the Code of Ethics, as well as a broader Code of Practice and Professional Knowledge Curriculum.

The Working Group will focus on reviewing these documents for currency and clarity, plus looking at what other guidance we, as an organisation, should provide. It's a great opportunity to "give back" to the profession and looks great on your CV.

The time commitment for the Working Group is around 2-3 hours a month plus meetings, with most meetings happening online for the moment.

If you're interested in getting involved, flick a note through to [email protected] with your CV (or a link to LinkedIn). It'll be fun!


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