Kao Academy: An Initiative to Raise Data Center Awareness among Children

Developer and operator of high-performance data centers for enterprise, cloud, HPC and AI, Kao Data, has launched the Kao Academy. It’s an industry-first science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) resource developed to introduce the purpose and role of a data center to primary and early secondary school-aged students.

The Kao Academy, which was developed in partnership with Cambridge Science Centre, an independent educational organization, will teach youngsters aged 7 to 11 about the purpose of a data center, how they are planned, manufactured, and constructed, as well as their value and relevance to our daily lives.

Accessible via an interactive website, the Kao Academy offers a live ‘data-crunching’ game, a downloadable ‘how-to’ pack that youngsters can use to build their own data center, and instructive movies on how Kao Data’s KLON-1 data center facility in Harlow was built. Participants may also access extra e-learning materials to study and play, as well as enter a competition to build their own data center, with the chance to win £150 in LEGO and a special visit to the Kao Data headquarters in Harlow.

Data Center Skills Shortage

Photo Adam Nethersole, VP of Marketing at Kao Data
“Starting with children, and through the Kao Academy, our mission is to drive greater awareness of data centers,” said Adam Nethersole, VP of Marketing at Kao Data.

According to Kao Data, encouragement of STEM education at a young age has been shown to be advantageous throughout the learning spectrum and can impact a student’s future academic and professional choices. Kao Data’s Kao Academy intends to engage the next generation of technology enthusiasts in ‘Key Stage 2’ and encourage them to take an active interest in science and engineering, with the possibility of some youngsters pursuing future jobs in the data center business.

The data center skills shortage has long been touted as one of the industry’s most pressing issues, and the Uptime Institute predicted that by 2025, the sector’s workforce will number about 2.3 million.

“Data centers are today instrumental to our way of life – they underpin many of our daily activities, support our work, entertainment, retail and financial choices, facilitate human inter-communication and were fundamental in the response to the Covid-19 pandemic,” said Adam Nethersole, Vice President of Marketing at Kao Data. “Despite all of this, general understanding and appreciation of data centers is surprisingly low. Starting with children, and through the Kao Academy, our mission is to drive greater awareness of data centers, their crucial role, and showcase the people who design, build, and operate them.”