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A graphical image issued by the National Cyber Security Centre, announcing that Gower College Swansea has been awarded the CyberFirst Gold Award.

College awarded for excellence in cyber security education

Gower College Swansea has become one of the latest education institutions to be awarded a Gold CyberFirst Award for its first-rate cyber security teaching.

The CyberFirst programme is run by the National Cyber Security Centre, part of GCHQ. The programme recognises schools and colleges that can demonstrate a commitment to inspiring the latest generation of cyber security experts and bridging the cyber skills gap.

Described as a champion of computing and cyber education and recognised for a first-rate approach to cyber security teaching, Gower College Swansea is delighted to receive its Gold Award.

Peter Scott Digital Skills and Innovation Lead said: “We are delighted to have achieved the Gold Award in a recent assessment. It plays testament to the hard work and dedication of our digital efforts within the College, and positively reflects on the importance of cyber security as a vital industry for our learners to aspire to work within.” 

To become a CyberFirst award winner, Gower College Swansea submitted a detailed application to demonstrate commitment to the future of the cyber industry and developing cyber talent, which was evaluated and scored against extensive criteria by a panel of representatives from government, industry and academia.

One of the inaugural events hosted as part of the gold initiative occurred last week (Thursday 7 March). Over 45 Year 9 students from Penyrheol, Dylan Thomas, and Cefn Hengoed comprehensive schools visited the College's Tycoch Campus to participate in a hands-on cyber skills testing event facilitated by the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC).

Students participated in CyberFirst Investigators, an initiative aimed at enhancing understanding of cybersecurity. Additionally, they engaged in role-playing scenarios as cybersecurity professionals employed by a fictional app company called Sirius Cyberworks. In this simulated environment, they tackled the case of a stolen game utilising techniques such as digital forensics, OSINT, and cryptography.

Speaking about the College's recognition, Joanne Ralph from CyberFirst said: "Gower College Swansea has shown their continued commitment and dedication to delivering excellence in cyber security education. Their journey from a silver to gold award attests to their investment of time, expertise, and resources, inspiring the next generation of cyber enthusiasts. I am pleased to be part of this exciting journey and where this will lead."