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Millions of young people leave higher education institutions without the proper skills

Millions of young people leave higher education institutions without the proper skills required in the workplace, ambassador Martin Schäfer said.

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Germany Ambassador to South Africa Martin Schäfer Photo: ANA Reporter

The private sector should play a leading role in ensuring that higher education graduates are fully equipped with the requisite skills to match the demands of the workplace, Germany Ambassador to South Africa Martin Schäfer said on Monday.

“Africa has a great potential of young workers, and South Africa, where I am representing the Federal Republic of Germany, shows that everyday. South Africa is able to produce world-class products that are able to complete with the best of the best on the world market,” Schäfer said in Pretoria at the launch of the Skills Initiative for Africa (SIFA) Project’s Funding Window 1.

He said however, it was sad to note that millions of young people leave higher education institutions without the proper skills required in the workplace.

“Every year, more than 20 million young Africans are finishing school and looking out for work. At the same time, the growing levels of youth employment become a fundamental challenge to many countries in Africa. Sixty percent of all unemployed young people in Africa are under the age of 25. How can we match the growing number of unemployed young people on one hand with the needs of the growing economies? It seems simple at first hand … we simply have to provide the young people with the proper education,” said Schäfer.

“That is the problem we are tackling with this project we are launching. For decades, in Germany, we don’t have youth unemployment because the people that come from school are being taken up by the dual education system to get the education that the economy needs.”

Schäfer said in countries battling youth unemployment, often the young people’s qualifications do not match the modern workplace requirements.

As part of the efforts to improve the employability of young people in Africa, the African Union, in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) of Germany, set up a Skills Initiative for Africa (SIFA) Project.

Implemented by the African Union Development Agency, the SIFA project supports the development of practical and employment-oriented skills for youth, women and vulnerable groups in partnership with private companies.

SIFA has established a financing facility for skills development to provide funding to participating countries on a competitive basis for the implementation of innovative and sustainable skills development initiatives.

Currently, eight countries are part of the SIFA project; namely Cameroon, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Togo and Tunisia.

Deputy director general responsible for technical and vocational education and training (TVET) in the department of higher education Gerda Magnus told the gathering that South Africa is reviewing its TVET offering to produce young people who are employable and have the capacity to create jobs.

SourceAfrican News Agency (ANA)

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Universities

First accredited Automated Weather Station unveiled at TUT campus

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History was made yesterday when the Tshwane University of Technology launched the first accredited Automated Weather Station in the country.

The SA Weather Services (SAWS) partnered with the university to showcase the world-class station that is expected to provide hazardous weather warnings, alerts and site-specific forecasts to people on campus and to the SAWS.

The readings can be seen on a screen set up on campus.

The university expects the innovation to enable knowledge-sharing and research in climate and technical services, as well as forecasting and training.

Management already expects the station to help in decision-making for sporting events, saying lives could be saved from early warning of imminent lightning storms.

The launch was celebrated by all professionals who worked on the project and students who came to witness history unfold right before their eyes.

Acting SAWS chief executive Mnikeli Ndabambi said: “Severe thunderstorms produce damaging hail, stormy winds, and flash flooding. With a radar network, we can give you the exact time when it will hit this institution so you can at least park your cars under shelter.

“I am told this weather station is already contributing to the SA Weather Services network.”

SOURCE- TUT News

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NMU academic activities disrupted by protest

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Nelson Mandela University has been working to restore normal academic and other operations following disruptions on Wednesday. A group of students barricaded entrances to the campuses, which was deemed to be in contravention of the standing interdict.

This resulted in a standoff with the SA Police Service, who set off stun grenades after protesting students failed to disperse once the terms of a standing interdict were read out shortly before 1 pm. The students subsequently retreated from the entrances.

The main issue relates to some senior students who did not receive NSFAS funding as a result of not meeting nationally-determined academic performance criteria. These students were subsequently requested to vacate off-campus accommodation.

A total of 1756 students, including 309 whose individual cases were assessed and dealt with by the Clearing House established then, were allowed registration through the various concessions. In light of today’s disruptions, members of the SA Police Service and Protection Service will continue to monitor the situation and secure all campus entrances and facilities.

SOURCE– Nelson Mandela University News

   

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Universities

Higher Education Minister officially Dr. Grace Naledi Mandisa Pandor

Higher education minister Naledi Pandor has graduated with a doctorate from the University of Pretoria.

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Image source : Twitter @UPTuks

Minister Naledi Pandor has lived up to her portfolio as a higher education minister by graduating with a doctorate from the University of Pretoria, in the latest of a string of qualifications behind her name.

The official announcement is expected at 3 pm but her wellwishers have already taken to social media to congratulate her over her Ph.D. in Education, which saw her delve into transformation in higher education.

* After donning her graduation robes on Tuesday afternoon, Pandor, who is in her 70s, said in a statement the decision to study again was nerve-wracking.

“But I knew I had to try. I was nervous and slightly embarrassed, as I am an older student, but once I started, I did not want to stop. There were several really bright young students and they seemed so confident and relaxed; I sometimes felt I could not catch up to their confidence levels, but I wanted to do this, so I persevered.”

Professor Chika Sehoole, Dean of the Faculty of Education at UP, said it was an honour to supervise the minister for her PhD. He previously worked with her before the old Department of Education was split. “After I agreed to supervise her, she set the rules for the relationship. She said to me, ‘Now you are my Professor, I am your student. You call me Naledi, and I will call you Professor.’ That was a shocker! I could not believe it, especially given our previous relationship in the Department of Education.”

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