Jocks look to inspire geeks

Olympic champions have come out to encourage more young people to consider a career in the IT industry.

Gold medalist sailors Sarah Webb and Sarah Ayton helped kick off the BigAmbition campaign, which is part of industry body e-skills UK's plan to encourage younger people into the sector.

After explaining how computers and modeling software helped her team win gold in Beijing earlier this year, Webb said: "When I was in school, I never thought this type of specialised computer technology was related to a career in IT, but it is one of many cool and important things that can be done in IT."

The choice of female athletes wasn't coincidence; the scheme is also hoping to address the lack of women in the sector.

Karen Price, chief executive of e-skills UK, said that there is "a disconnect between students loving technology, gadgets and social media, and studying or pursuing a career in IT. What BigAmbition aims to get across to students is that all the technology they love is developed by people with careers in IT and that they could have these careers and make a difference."

BigAmbition is supported by Sony, Oracle, IBM, HP, Orange, LG and Microsoft.