Australia's RMIT University Launches Blockchain Course to Fill Skill Gaps

Wednesday 3 May 2020, 3:45 PM AEST - 1 month ago

Australia's RMIT University Launches Blockchain Course to Fill Skill Gaps

Melbourne, Tuesday 26th May - RMIT Online has announced two landmark postgraduate programs that equip students with high-demand technology skills in emerging specialisations. The Graduate Certificate in Cyber Security and Graduate Certificate in Blockchain-Enabled Businesswill be delivered in partnership with industry leaders IBM, Palo Alto Networks and Stone & Chalk, with classes beginning in October 2020.

RMIT Online CEO Helen Souness said that the newest additions to the portfolio will equip Australian businesses for the fast-moving and uncertain future of work.

“Over the past few months, we have observed a significant shift in traditional ways of working and conducting business,” she said. 

“The unpredictable nature of our current environment requires us to strengthen and accelerate our understanding of the digital landscape. Cybersecurity and blockchain technologies are emerging as business-critical skills and we are delivering the training that provides those skills in our workforce.” 

Existing trends in cybercrime and the need for businesses to adopt emerging technologies to drive transformation have been accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic, making it vital to fill skills shortages with industry-partnered digital education delivery.

According to Accenture’s Cost of Cybercrime study, the total cumulative value at risk from 2019-2023 from cybercrime is forecasted to be up to US$5.2 trillion, with each Australian organisation losing an average of US$6.79 million annually.

In Australia the cyber security industry has the potential to almost triple in size to at least A$6 billion by 2026, requiring an additional 18,000 cyber security professionals. The worldwide skills gap is 2.93 million, including 2.14 million in Asia Pacific.

Sean Duca, Vice President and Regional Chief Security Officer, Asia Pacific and Japan at Palo Alto Networks said today’s announcement with RMIT Online demonstrates the need to address the current cybersecurity skills shortage and how this will help boost Australia’s capability in cybersecurity to meet the needs of our ever-changing online world. 

“The sophistication and scope of cyberattacks will continue to rise, and with an interconnected world, cybersecurity has become even more paramount than ever before and we need to ensure that everyone has a part to play. Organisations however are struggling to find the talent to keep up with the constant race against cyber criminals, and secure digital innovation. It is important we enable our next generation to recognise the good and the bad of the cyber world, so they can ensure a safer workforce” said Duca.

Blockchain is set to transform business over the coming years and decades, with researchers predicting 80-percent plus annual growth rates until 2025. PWC research indicates that 84-percent of tech-aware executives expect to apply blockchain technology to their business, but only 1 in 20 managers could easily source the skills they needed to do so. 

Already two of the largest emerging sub-sectors in the technology industry, cybersecurity and blockchain have become more important as world events force a rapid migration into home office environments and sees businesses face accelerated transformation timelines.

Rupert Colchester, Head of Blockchain for IBM Australian and New Zealand said the new course offering will ready Australian businesses and future blockchain professionals for the proliferation of blockchain technology.

IBM is excited to work in partnership with RMIT University to offer students the next wave of education around blockchain technology. This Graduate Certificate will help students with the skills necessary to be future ready, and learn using the best industry ready IBM technology. Blockchain technology is having a greater impact on Australian businesses now than ever before and it is quickly becoming an essential tool for many businesses in Australia and worldwide.

“Graduates will possess the skills necessary to harness blockchain to create new levels of transparency allowing businesses and individuals to securely share information that previously would have not been possible. Students will also be able to build more transparent supply chains which can be used across a number of industries ranging from the financial sector to fast moving consumer goods.” said Colchester. 

Students enrolled in the Graduate Certificate of Blockchain-Enabled Business program will explore the fundamentals of blockchain and its impact on the economy and societal institutions within the context of the Australian business sector. Upon completing the program, students will be armed with the skills and knowledge necessary to be a thought leader in the sector, enabling them to drive blockchain technology adoption and thinking for organisations.

For those enrolled in the Graduate Certificate of Cyber Security, the program will provide a comprehensive understanding of cyber security risks and issues, as well as the technical skills to transition into a career within cyber security. 

Both postgraduate programs will run for 9 months, and will be fully credentialed by RMIT University.

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