CyberFirst Degree Apprenticeship in Cyber Security Ref.2120

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Apprentices and Interns
Cheltenham, Scarborough, Manchester
Total package: £22,086 (this is made up of a basic salary £19,897 + £2,189 concessionary payment)


As one of Britain’s intelligence agencies, GCHQ unlocks the complex world of communications to make a real difference to the safety of the nation. We work closely with MI5 and MI6, our partners in the intelligence community, to safeguard Britain’s people, interests and businesses from various threats.  
Diversity and inclusion are critical to GCHQ’s mission. We recognise how vital it is that our workforce reflects the diverse communities we seek to protect. Having diverse backgrounds, ethnicities, and ways of thinking helps ensure that we always challenge each other and make sure that we’re getting it right. We welcome and encourage applications from everyone, including from groups underrepresented in our workforce.  

The UK needs to train a new generation of cyber security specialists. GCHQ’s unique CyberFirst Degree Apprenticeship is a great opportunity to develop advanced cyber security skills, while helping the UK to grow its technical capabilities.  During the three-year programme, while gaining a recognised university degree, you’ll get exposure to some of the world’s most cutting-edge technologies along with practical insights into the innovative ways we use them to protect our digital world.
Our modern lives revolve around technology. And the more we rely on our gadgets, the more our nation needs cyber security experts. If you’re looking to start your career after ‘A’ levels (or equivalent), our unique CyberFirst Degree Apprenticeship will offer you new challenges every day.  This is a full Degree Apprenticeship like no other. You’ll gain a unique insight into our work which is always technically challenging and there is huge scope for your own personal development.  Our work is constantly evolving, giving you lots of opportunities over the three-year programme to explore and develop advance cyber security skills in areas such as programming, computing, technical analysis, malware, vulnerability and threat analysis and computer hardware.
Think cyber-attacks, espionage, terrorism, and organised crime.  This is an opportunity that you simply won’t find anywhere else.

Along with your day-to-day work, we’ll pay for you to study a recognised degree in Cyber Security, all with a basic salary of £19,897 +  concessionary payment £2,189. You’ll receive full training and support throughout the programme and all the benefits that you’d expect from a Civil Service organisation.  Whilst gaining a recognised university degree and building your experience and confidence in the workplace you’ll also develop a broad range of skills including teamwork, communication, leadership, and be part of a close-knit cohort that provides opportunities for support and learning within its community.   

After successful completion of your Degree Apprenticeship, subject to business needs and you meeting the necessary criteria, you may be offered full-time employment.


To apply for the CyberFirst Degree Apprenticeship in Cyber Security starting in September 2021, you must:
•    Be a British citizen, (dual nationality is fine in many cases) Usually, you need to have been a resident in the UK for ten years before applying for a role with us (but we assess each case individually).
•    Have (or be expecting to have by September 2021), a minimum of 2 ‘A’ Levels at Grade B and 1 ‘A’ level at grade C or above (112 UCAS points or equivalent*)  
*A list of equivalent qualifications can be found on the UCAS Tariff calculator.
•    Also have an IGCSE/GCSE Maths at grade of B or 5 or above (or equivalent)
We are looking for motivated and committed individuals, from all backgrounds, with an aspiration for a career in cyber security.  A keen interest in, or desire to learn about programming, computing and technology is essential.  As part of the selection process, you’ll be expected to demonstrate that you have the aptitude to develop a technical understanding of cyber security.  Although previous experience in coding would be advantageous, it’s not required as you’ll have the opportunity to develop these skills on the apprenticeship.   
If you’re excited about working with us and think you have some of what we’re looking for but aren’t sure if you’re 100% there yet… why not just give it a go!
At GCHQ we’re proud of our inclusive and supportive working environment that’s designed to encourage open minds and attitudes. As an organisation that values and nurtures talent, we’re committed to helping you fulfil your potential. Through a comprehensive training and development package, we’ll enable you to grow your skills and perform to the best of your abilities. Over the three-year programme, you’ll get a mix of university-delivered classroom and lab education in state-of-the-art off-site facilities along with technical training, mentoring and job shadowing, and hands-on, work-based placements and projects. Supported by our collaborative learning environment, you’ll soon be working on projects that help keep Britain safe.  
Formal training will take place, mostly off site in the first two years, in Cheltenham which is an easy commute from cities such as Bristol and Birmingham. Work placements will typically take place in the location for which you have been recruited. After successful completion of your three-year Degree Apprenticeship and subject to business needs and meeting the necessary criteria, you may be offered full-time employment.
Total package: £22,086 (this is made up of a basic salary £19,897 + £2,189 concessionary payment).
The role is based in Cheltenham for the first two years and in the final year you will be based at the location you have been recruited for. The majority of posts are likely to be based in Cheltenham but there may be opportunities in Scarborough and Manchester.
To apply for this position, you must be 18 by 1st September 2021 and meet our nationality, residency and security requirements.  Full details of these requirements can be found here.
Applications will open on 1st September 2020 and close on 26th October 2020.
Be prepared to dedicate 60-90 minutes to completing your application. We’re conscious this might be more time than you expected, so our system will allow you to save your application at any time and come back to it later. But remember to submit your full application before the closing date.
Once we’ve established that you meet our eligibility criteria, the next steps of the selection process are:
•    Online Exercise – Please note, the link to the online exercise platform will be emailed to you following confirmation of eligibility and will be available from 1st September 2020. This must be completed no later than 16th November 2020.

We would like to offer you the opportunity to try out the immersive labs before you submit your application, to find out more, please click here.
•    Business sift
•    Assessment Centre / Interview*  

*Assessment Centres/Interviews are likely to be held in January 2021. 

As part of our commitment to be a ‘Disability Confident Leader’, we offer an interview to all candidates with a disability who meet our minimum criteria for the role that they are applying for. This is known as an Offer to Interview. To secure an interview for this vacancy, the minimum criteria (in order of application process) is:
Eligibility Questions - You will be asked a series of questions relating to this vacancy. If you meet these criteria, you will be directed to the initial application form.
Online Assessment - You will be required to reach the pass mark set for the Immersive Labs platform. On successful completion of this assessment and an application form sift, you will then be invited to an interview. This will be a virtual interview and is our guaranteed interview.
If you require any reasonable adjustments or are concerned about the Immersive Labs platform not being fully accessible for you, please get in touch and we will reach out to discuss how best to support you.

Examples of reasonable adjustments include any modification or adjustment to the application or hiring process that would enable you to fully participate in that process.


If successful, you’ll receive an offer to complete the CyberFirst Degree Apprenticeship in Cyber Security, conditional upon exam results and you completing our Developed Vetting (DV) process which enables you to obtain the level of security clearance required to undertake this role.  

This Program / Vacancy is closed to applications.