First students of cyber-security course celebrate new qualification with veteran

Aaron Revell (17), receiving his online Qufaro CyberEPQ certificate from Colossus veteran Irene Dixon (93) at The National Museum of Computing, Bletchley Park.
Aaron Revell (17), receiving his online Qufaro CyberEPQ certificate from Colossus veteran Irene Dixon (93) at The National Museum of Computing, Bletchley Park.

Ten students from the first cyber-security qualification were inspired after meeting a Bletchley Park veteran.

They had the opportunity to meet Irene Dixon, one of the first operators of Colossus Mk I and an early pioneer of cyber security.

Sixty students successfully completed the Qufaro online CyberEPQ (Extended Project Qualification), equivalent to an AS-level. The online EPQ course is a first step towards the establishment of a National College of Cyber Security by Qufaro on Bletchley Park.

Demand from individuals and schools for the next online course is high with more than 250 pre-registration enquiries already received.

At the first graduation ceremony in front of the Rebuild of Colossus at The National Museum of Computing on Bletchley Park, 94-year-old Irene spoke of her pioneering secret wartime work.

She said: “We didn’t fully understand the importance of the work we were doing with Colossus until decades after the Second World War. Later we learned Colossus was used to break Lorenz, the German High Command messages! I see quite clearly that these students are on the first steps of their career to safeguard our country from cyber threats.”

Tim Reynolds, a co-founder and board member of Qufaro, said: “We are progressing our plans for a National College of Cyber Security on historic Bletchley Park and welcome those across industry who wish to play their part.”