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New Google-Backed Children’s Coding Competition Gets Royal Approval

Michael Moore joined TechWeek Europe in January 2014 as a trainee before graduating to Reporter later that year. He covers a wide range of topics, including but not limited to mobile devices, wearable tech, the Internet of Things, and financial technology.

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Duke of York: Peer to Peer Challenge challenges young people to get involved in coding

A new nationwide youth coding competition supported by Google and the Duke Of York is aiming to unearth and showcase the talents of some of the UK’s brightest IT minds.

Launched today by coding organisation Young Rewired State, The Duke of York: Peer to Peer Challenge looks to uncover bright new young talent, with the winners receiving an invitation to Buckingham Palace to display their projects.

Participants will take on one of five coding challenges, including creating a website to help allay parental concerns about the digital space and designing an app or video tutorial to make it easier for others to get into programming.

Program code on a monitor © alexskopje - FotoliaStarting young

Set up in 2008 as a youth spin-off from hack day specialists Rewired State, Young Rewired State is a non-profit global network which looks to facilitate contact between children and young people interested in coding in the UK through events and online networking.

“Technology has become a universal language and businesses across all sectors of industry are crying out for a workforce with the right skills for the 21st century,” Emma Mulqueeny, Young Rewired State CEO said of the launch.

“With so many programmers learning through self-directed means – often picking up these skills as a hobby in their bedroom – our initiative will offer a platform for the value of these skills to be recognised and showcased to a captive audience.

The competition is open to all young people aged 18 and under, and those interested can sign up on Young Rewired State’s website. Supported by Young Rewired State’s established network of mentors, participants will develop software solutions to submit before the 12 April deadline. Entries will then be assessed by a panel of judges including renowned physicist and mathematician Conrad Wolfram with the winners being invited to Buckingham Palace to receive their awards from the Duke Of York.

“The explosion of technology into the world around us has resulted in huge opportunities for talented computer scientists,” said Alison Cutler, Google. “Both Young Rewired State and Google are passionate about expanding access to coding so that young people from all backgrounds have the opportunity to become creators – and not just consumers – of tomorrow’s technological innovations.

“Initiatives like the Peer to Peer Challenge are vital in inspiring, engaging and retaining students in the field of computing and we are excited to see what the young coders create through this initiative.”

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