Fatuma Abdi: Fujitsu Cyber Security Degree Apprentice
Posted on 4th December 2020 at 10:27
As part of Fatuma's Cyber Security course, she had the opportunity to apply for a 6 week placement with Heathrow, and she was one of the students selected for an industry placement. She was extremely passionate about going to university before her placement at Heathrow and believed her placement was just a means for her to gain more experience. Working at Heathrow and Fujitsu opened Fatuma’s mind up to the possibility of other routes into the IT industry. Kamilla, our industry placement development officer provided Fatuma with the guidance she needed to make an informed decision on her next steps. Slowly, Fatuma opened up during her experience and managed to express flair, determination and passion to learn, which impressed the Heathrow and Fujitsu teams.
"I believe industry placements give students a better understanding of the real working world and sets them up for success when they finish their studies. It gives students the opportunity to develop both soft and technical skills that are so crucial for their future employment. From the employer’s perspective, it helps them to develop fresh and raw talent." - Kamilla Carrigan (Industry Placement Development Officer @ Uxbridge College).
Once Fatuma had completed the industry placement, the team were extremely impressed with her work and passion for the industry. In addition, she was Uxbridge College's Women in Technology ambassador, motivating young females to be more confident and pursue careers in the technology industry.
Industry placement experience made Fatuma change her mind about going to university and apply for the apprenticeship with Fujitsu instead. She successfully passed an intensive selection process and was offered a degree apprenticeship.
"My two years at Uxbridge college has expanded and enhanced my knowledge of the IT sector. The course I was studying was Cyber Security level 3 extended diploma. I did not have a lot of belief and confidence in myself, however the staff instilled this into me with how positive, caring and supportive they were. In my second year I was selected to be a part of a placement for six weeks managed by Heathrow and Fujitsu. This placement was vital to where I am today as it helped me gain more soft and hard skills as well as help me network and meet other employees in the industry. The six weeks on the placement showed and inspired me to take a different approach to university which is what I was planning to do. Instead I chose to be a Cyber Security degree apprentice at Fujitsu. My first few months at Fujitsu has been as exciting as I expected. I have been involved in a few projects and I am made to feel like a valued member of this company. Since joining Fujitsu it has improved my problem solving skills, time management and ability to work under pressure in a real working world scenario which will benefit me in the future. I feel this type of experience you would not get in university. Choosing the degree apprenticeship has turned out to be the best decision I’ve ever made and I thank Uxbridge College for giving me this opportunity and believing in me.
My experience at this well-known organisation and the world's fourth-largest IT services provider was a dream come true. This only strengthened my knowledge of the outside world as everything that was taught through assignments in college was applied in real-life scenarios, which personally I found more interesting. We spoke to apprentices and graduates allowing us to have that understanding of what they do on a day to day basis. This helped me decide on what route I would be taking to start my next chapter.” – Fatuma
Fujitsu give their thoughts on providing opportunities to students, such as placements and apprenticeships:
“We’re really pleased to welcome Fatuma into the Cyber Security Technical Architecture and Consulting team at Fujitsu. From our initial contact with her through the joint Heathrow/Uxbridge College initiative, through the apprentice assessment and ultimately into the role of Apprentice Technical Architect with us, she has shown an enthusiasm and aptitude which will serve her well in her career. Her college education has prepared her well for the role and the team at Fujitsu look forward to working with her and our other young talent to meet the ever growing cyber security challenge in the years ahead.” - Ade Keasey, Practice Head, Cyber Security Technical Architecture & Consulting, Fujitsu.
“We were delighted to support the initiative Heathrow ran for IoT placement students at the airport where we were able to introduce them to the cyber capabilities within Fujitsu, as well as the wider work we do beyond aviation. It was then great to hear that Fatuma had chosen to apply for, and subsequently be offered, a degree apprenticeship with Fujitsu. I am confident she will continue to make great progress in her career with us.” - Steven Eyre, Aviation Director
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