On March 14, 2023, Ciena celebrated one year of our collaboration with Barefoot, an initiative by BCS, The Chartered Institute of IT and Computing at School. Barefoot is focused on empowering students and educators across the UK with free workshops and resources to help deliver curriculum on computing.

Ciena is supporting Barefoot over a four-year period as part of our Digital Inclusion program, which aims to help students across the globe develop digital skills. Over the last year, our Ciena team members in Belfast have volunteered to facilitate Barefoot’s free workshops for educators, helping to expand digital learning in Northern Ireland.

Robot with powerpoint screen on in the background To celebrate the success of this collaboration over the past year, students, educators, industry leaders, education policymakers, and Ciena team members attended an event in Belfast. During the event, students from Taughmonagh Primary School and Ballynahinch Primary School showcased the computing projects they had created using Barefoot’s resources. The students also had a bit of fun by quizzing the Ciena volunteers. Additionally, the Ciena team members shared insights on the benefit of volunteering with Barefoot and sharing their knowledge with the students and educators.

Man helping a student on his computer

Alison Wilson, Vice President of Fulfillment Operations at Ciena, attended the event and noted the impact that this collaboration has had on students in Northern Ireland.

"Together, we have helped more than 27,000 pupils by providing trainings, workshops and other resources to expand their digital skills. Working with and supporting our local schools has been an amazing experience and we are thrilled to see what the next year brings." - Alison Wilson, Vice President of Fulfillment Operations

Woman presenting to a room of students

Ciena will continue to support Barefoot as we work together to close the digital disparity among students in Northern Ireland.