"Supporting young and local talent is so important"
The Club website in conversation with Andrew Stevens, CEO of CNet Training, sponsors of Town's U23s and supporters of the Academy
First of all, Andrew, what is the nature of CNet Training’s business?
CNet Training specialises in technical education within the digital infrastructure industry which comprises the network cable installation and the data centre sectors. We have been designing and delivering technical educational programmes across the globe since 1996 and we’re pleased to be the only dedicated industry training provider in the world to award both internationally recognised qualifications and official certifications. The Global Digital Infrastructure Education Framework offers sector professionals an opportunity to plan education programmes that meet their requirements. From copper and fibre installation through to a Masters Degree in Data Centre Leadership and Management, CNet is able to map professional education programmes to actual career progression routes throughout the industry.
It’s great to have CNet Training as a key partner and sponsor here at ITFC. What was CNet Training’s motivation for deciding to sponsor the U23 team and the Academy?
CNet has a long association with supporting local grassroots football. We have been sponsoring Suffolk FA’s Senior Cup for a number of years and are passionate about supporting local talent and promoting sports across our teams. The CNet team plays 5-aside football on Monday nights and football is always a great conversation starter in the office! Our head office is based just outside Bury St Edmunds and the majority of our headquarters staff are located within the Suffolk area too, with many being avid ITFC fans. Football is a relatively short career and we can support in helping to provide career options either in the short-term or further in the future. We are delighted to be working alongside such a prestigious football club and to have CNet branding at Portman Road.
Why do you feel it is important to support the up-coming new talent within the game?
Supporting young and local talent is so important. They are so dedicated to the sport from such a young age that it’s vital the community supports them. There are some really talented young players at the Club and we look forward to watching them on their journey and future careers. Unfortunately, not all the individuals will make it through the tough selection process and so we are here to encourage individuals to keep the door open. We have 25 years of experience in guiding individuals through to a successful and lucrative second career.
How are you working with the Academy?
We love being involved with Ipswich Town and the Academy, they really do support the players as they progress and blossom into future first-team players. From the start of conversations about a sponsorship deal, we knew we wanted to do more than just partner with the Club and Academy for branding exposure. We are working on plans to work closely with the Academy to offer players the opportunity to learn about the digital infrastructure sector and expand their skills into network cable installation. The industry is facing a skills shortage and there is increased demand for copper and fibre installation to support the growing demand for better broadband and the UK’s commitment to install full fibre broadband. Skills in this sector are sought after and can provide many future career opportunities. As an organisation, we are passionate about giving back to the local community and this partnership will enable us to provide the academy players with skills that could open up many future career opportunities as and when they may need it in the future.