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Not just a boys’ club: Studying IT in Australia w/ Academy of Information Technology

Daniel Lavorato, student advisor at AIT (Academy of Information Technology) explains why students should choose Australia to study IT abroad, as well as internship opportunities, prospective big name employers and whether IT is still a boys’ club.

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Why should a student consider Australia to study IT in?

‘The digital creative industries in Australia are consistently growing and with this come an increased demand for capable and qualified professionals. The IT industry in Australia has seen a dramatic shift from areas such as networking and database management, to encompass a more creative focus such as programming, web development and innovation. According to NICTA, the nation’s largest organisation dedicated to ICT research, there is a severe shortage of skilled digital media professionals currently in the industry. There is a big opportunity for IT professionals to take advantage of this skill gap in Australia and carve out a broad and successful career.’

 

What are the benefits of studying IT abroad rather than at home?

‘Studying abroad is the best thing anyone can do for their education. It should be mandatory as you will grow and develop into a global citizen through new cultural experiences, friendships and the challenges of being outside your comfort zone. Studying at a place like the Academy of Information Technology, where more than half of our students are local Australians means you will be able to learn alongside locals, make local friends and gain an in-depth cultural experience.  You will also meet a range of international students, who will share their knowledge, skills and their own cultural perspective to give you a rich educational and developmental experience.’

 

Is Computing still a boys’ club for Bill Gates look-a-likes?

‘Not at all – IT is now a cool subject. The success stories of people like Steve Jobs (Apple), Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook) and the thousands of other IT figureheads has taken this field of out the dark room and into the spotlight. The fact that we use IT apps and programs every minute of every day, and that many now incorporate cool designs, game and applications means that we associate IT will success, wealth and coolness. Just look at how IT staff are represented in many movies – young, sexy punky guys and girls working to ‘beat the system’.

More and more girls are in the IT industry, combining programming and design into apps and games and whole bunch of cool things we use every day. As software becomes more and more widely used, the appeal of IT becomes greater for all individuals. For industry, the baseline for IT knowledge is going up for every business professional. IT is no longer for the geekiest guy in the room. There has been tremendous growth in many demographics for the popularity in IT. Internet culture itself has seen a rise to the forefront of mainstream culture through websites such as Reddit and 9gag.’

 

What are the most prominent IT companies in Australia with whom students might progress onto?

Reactive is an award winning digital agency with offices in Melbourne and Sydney. They are a full service agency and offer unique solutions in Design, Development, strategy, integrated marketing and project management.

Atlassian was voted number 2 on BRWs “100 Best Places to Work” in 2013. It is a $3.5 billion software development company specialising in creating tools for other software developers.’

 

Do AIT help students find work experience with such companies?

‘AIT has internship programs for graduates looking for work placements. We have numerous companies seeking interns with an IT or digital media skill set. After a student graduates, they can approach us with their field of interest and we will ask our partners about who is currently taking on interns. In 2013, Quantm Web Solutions (based in Sydney) took on 3 AIT interns and offered 2 of them full time jobs after only 3 weeks. We love helping our students start their career.’

 

What have AIT grads gone on to do once they have graduated?

‘AIT specialises in taking creative and talented individuals and giving them the digital tools they need to carve out a successful career. AIT graduates have gone on to work in a multitude of fields. We have had IT students start their own web development start-ups, as well as work in some of the most respected companies in the industry. Our Bachelor of IT (Mobile Apps Development) was launched in Nov 2014 so we don’t have any grads yet. However we have been talking with a company called Antares which is a partner of Microsoft who are desperate to take on some AIT grads as soon as they finish with us.’

 

 

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About Author

Paul Ellett is the editor for Hotcourses Abroad. His role is to plan, produce and share editorial, videos, infographics, eBooks and any other content to inform prospective and current international students about their study abroad experience. When he's not thinking about student visas in Sweden and application deadlines, Paul is an avid fan of comedy podcasts and Nicolas Cage films.

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Academy of Information Technology (AIT)