The Ada Story
HOW WE CAME TO BE
Ada is a specialist college which gives students the necessary digital skills to build their potential and help them begin a successful career in tech. We want to inspire our students and help them appreciate that right now there is an unprecedented period of opportunity for digital pioneers.
This is why our story is important. The story of Ada, founded by Mark Smith and Tom Fogden, is one of ambition, hard work and resilience whichever way the dice falls.
THE SKILLS CRISIS
It began with the struggle of a student who was studying Computer Science at A-Level. Mark was mentoring a student who needed additional tuition to help his studies. It soon became apparent that there was a real lack of Computer Science tutors in Greater London, and an alarming mismatch between what students were learning in school and the expectation in industry. Something had to change.
THE LIGHTBULB MOMENT
Mark’s mentoring experience inspired a the idea for a specialist digital skills college which empowers future generations with the right skills to lead flourishing lives. Ten years after joining the first cohort of Teach First, Mark and Tom’s paths crossed again, literally, as they walked from London Bridge to attend a reunion in 2013. Slowly, the two friends began to mastermind a business plan.