Today First Minister Nicola Sturgeon visited the new Samsung Digital Classroom at The Prince’s Trust Wolfson Glasgow Centre to mark its official switch on for young people in the city.

Recognising the growing demand for digital and STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) skills in Scotland, The Trust will use the new Samsung technology and resources to help vulnerable young people gain confidence and essential skills needed for today’s job market.

During her visit, the First Minister met young people from The Trust’s personal development, education and employability, and enterprise programmes. The group demonstrated new digital skills they have learnt using the Digital Classroom, including graphic design, app building and 3D printing.

Research from The Prince's Trust suggests there is a widening STEM skills gap amongst young people – eight in ten (81%) employers believe a significant skills crisis will hit their organisations in the next three years. Moreover, seven in ten believe the recruitment of young people is vital to avoid a skills gap (69%).

In response to this, The Trust is committed to embedding STEM-based activities across its programmes to boost young people’s employability chances and bridge the growing skills gap in Scotland.

Samsung has been a Gold Patron of The Prince’s Trust since 2012, helping to equip hundreds of young people with vital skills for the future. Samsung’s Digital Classrooms in The Prince’s Trust centres in London, Stoke, and now Glasgow, facilitate technology education for hundreds of young people.

The Prince’s Trust Kennington Centre has proved a huge success. A recent survey highlighted 76% of young people felt that the IT and digital skills learnt through the Digital Classroom will help them to get a job.  

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said:

Our vision is of Scotland as a world-leading entrepreneurial and innovative nation.  And I am delighted to help launch the Samsung Digital Classroom. This joint initiative between Samsung and The Prince’s Trust Scotland is to be commended. 

“We want all young people to get a good STEM education and develop the skills that will support them to reach their full potential. Our work to encourage young people to take up STEM subjects is paying off but we are committed to doing even better.

“Investing in entrepreneurial education, with the continued support of Scotland CAN DO, Prince’s Trust Scotland and companies like Samsung, will mean that Scotland will be fostering the next generation of Scottish entrepreneurs.”

Allan Watt, Director for The Prince’s Trust Scotland, added: ““Based in the heart of Glasgow, the new Samsung Digital Classroom will help the some of the most disadvantaged young people across the Clyde Valley. They will be able to use the latest technology and training to get the digital technology skills that employers are crying out for. 

Samsung's generosity and leadership is making a real difference to unemployed young people, helping them into jobs, back into education and to start their own businesses.

Andy Griffiths, President of Samsung Electronics UK & Ireland, said: “Samsung is thrilled to open the Digital Classroom at The Prince’s Trust Wolfson Centre in Glasgow with The Prince’s Trust. Together, we have been supporting the development of digital skills for young people throughout the UK, inspiring them in the present and equipping them for their future careers. With the opening in Glasgow today, we are one step closer to making sure all young people have access to the necessary resources and training to take advantage of everything the digital world has to offer.”

Sarah Thorne, Prince’s Trust Job Ambassador, 22 said:

I have been involved with The Prince’s Trust since I was 14 and it played a huge role in helping me realise my full potential. It was an honour to meet the First Minister and switch on the Samsung Digital Classroom which I know will help so many young people learn essential digital skills.