I.T Scholarships and Bursaries in Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland is fast becoming an I.T hub, with one in seven job vacancies across the country being an I.T based position. I.T jobs are plentiful, pay well (with salaries averaging over £40,000) and often offer lots of added benefits and comforts. There are plenty of ways you can enter the field and become a successful I.T professional. With a wide variety of job roles, varying from data focused and analytical roles such as a data engineer to roles that allow for a little bit more creativity such as front-end designer. The I.T sector is truly diverse and open to individuals from different backgrounds. 

The Northern Irish tech sector is keen on growing their already successful I.T workforce and it shows – with a variety of apprenticeships, training programmes bursaries and scholarships available within the I.T field. These allow you to gain experience, earn money, and learn directly from industry professionals without spending a penny. With an economy hungry for more I.T specialists, many renowned NI companies work in partnership with the government and local universities to offer people from less conventional backgrounds, such as career changers and self learners, a way to get certified to pursue their dreams. 

 

What is a scholarship?

The UK government offers a huge number of scholarships aiming to help people get certified in their field of choice by covering the cost of their tuition. Scholarships can be awarded directly through a government organisation, college or university, or even through a private company.

Organisations can have different motives for offering scholarships, with unique entry requirements which means it’s vital to always carefully read the terms and entry criteria of every scholarship you apply for to ensure you know exactly what you are signing up for. 

The most traditional definition of a scholarship is where a student is awarded money based on exceptional performance, however, this model is more popular in countries where higher education is extremely expensive and there is no effective government student loan system put into place. In the UK scholarships can also be offered by individual companies as part of a programme which aims to qualify you to be able to work with them. 

What is a Bursary?

The traditional definition of a bursary is a monetary award, most commonly issued by a higher education institution or an alternative funding authority, aiming to enable a student to comfortably and successfully complete their studies. This can be by providing finances to cover the cost of books, living or travel for people who may not be able to afford these otherwise. 

More commonly across Northern Ireland, you will find that bursaries may be used to encourage specific groups or individuals to study, by companies who offer to cover or reduce the costs of learning.

 

How to get a Scholarship / Bursary in NI

Northern Ireland is filled with fantastic opportunities for higher education study with plenty of funded programmes, bursaries and scholarships available across the country that enable people to successfully get into the I.T sector, without having to spend money. Each different programme will have its own set of guidelines and entry requirements offering different lengths of study and levels of education. If you are not in a position where you can afford a traditional university degree, or simply don’t want to commit to having to pay off debt for years to come – don’t fret, there are plenty of options available for you. 

We have outlined some fantastic recurring programmes offered by international companies which have headquarters in NI, that combine work and study to help you work towards that dream degree in the I.T field. All of these programmes offer a full undergraduate degree upon completion with some work experience blended into the mix to give you a well rounded set of skills that will give you a kick start in the Industry. 

 

AllState

Allstate is one of Northern Ireland’s largest IT companies. Heavily involved in government efforts to help educate people in I.T, AllState continuously gets involved with local schools and students in order to raise awareness of fantastic opportunities that are available in the industry.

A subsidiary of the Allstate Corporation, it is one of the largest global liability and insurance companies. Providing a range of innovative business support services across main I.T areas – technology, data, cybersecurity and finance, making it a perfect environment for young I.T professionals to flourish. 

AllState offers various opportunities to upskill, including the Good Hands Academy. Successful participants will be guided to complete a full BSc Hons degree in Computing Systems for free, in association with University of Ulster, whilst being offered a full time paid position at the Allstate Belfast office.

Find out more here: Apprenticeship Opportunities | Allstate NI

 

 

Deloitte

Deloitte is a leading global provider of audit and assurance, consulting, financial advisory, risk advisory, tax, and related services. This world renowned organisation is another driving force behind making I.T accessible for Northern Ireland’s public. Prominent in the local educational field, they often get involved in career fairs, open days and educational events to encourage people to work in I.T.

Deloitte offers the BrightStart apprenticeship programme, giving applicants a choice between two distinguishable routes – technology or cyber security. This earn while you learn apprenticeship programme provides opportunities to gain different professional qualifications, as well as a full degree in your field of choice with no fees attached.

Find out more: https://www2.deloitte.com/uk/en/pages/careers/articles/brightstart-business-apprenticeship-scheme.html

 

Kainos

Kainos provides digital technology solutions and workday deployments that allow organisations and people to work smarter, faster and better. Kainos is well established across NI as one of the leading I.T companies, with fantastic opportunities for development and great company culture. 

Kainos offer the ‘Earn As You Learn’ programme – a long running, well established apprenticeship scheme where you will be offered a permanent role at their head office and earn a full time salary, while studying towards an I.T degree. 

Find out more here: https://www.kainos.com/careers/earn-as-you-learn

 

Liberty IT

Liberty IT is part of Liberty Mutual Insurance. Offering insurance and digital transformation services to corporate clients, this company boasts a portfolio of awards related to company culture and working conditions, such as being nominated for ‘Best Workplaces’ award three years in a row. 

Liberty IT is a fantastic place to grow your skills and get experience, offering a challenging and fast paced working environment that will fast track your learning journey. The company offers multiple internships and scholarships, aiming to give students an early glimpse into the amazing world of I.T.

Find out more here: https://www.liberty-it.co.uk/about-us/overview 

 

PwC

PwC is a multinational professional services network of firms, operating as partnerships under the PwC brand. PwC ranks as the second-largest professional services network in the world and is considered one of the ‘Big Four’ accounting firms. Bursting with opportunities for professional development and career progression, PwC offers a plethora of options for school leavers to enter the workforce. 

PwC are famous for their range of apprenticeships, which enable you to make a full time salary when learning. The company also offers the ‘Flying Start Degree Programme’ which lets participants earn a degree in one of the three areas – accounting, technology and business management. 

Find out more here: https://www.pwc.co.uk/careers/student-careers/school-careers/our-programmes/flying-start-degrees.html 

 

CyberFirst

CyberFirst is a student bursary and development scheme for Under Graduates. It gives you an opportunity to receive a generous annual bursary, paid summer internships and the potential for 3 years’ employment in National Security. 

CyberFirst is a Government-backed scheme pivotal part of the UK government’s National Cyber Security Programme covering a broad range of activities; a comprehensive bursary scheme, as well as development courses at UK universities and colleges. 

More details here: CyberFirst overview – NCSC.GOV.UK