Ad­dress­ing the ‘scarce skills’ short­age

Zululand Observer - Weekender - - ZO BUSINESS - Tam­lyn Jolly

A RE­CENTLY rolled out study as­sis­tance pro­gramme will change the lives of eight lo­cal Class of 2017 ma­tric learn­ers, af­ter each of them re­ceived a full bur­sary to study at the univer­sity of their choice.

The pro­gramme is the re­sult of a long-time as­pi­ra­tion of the Richards Bay In­dus­trial De­vel­op­ment Zone (RBIDZ) to con­trib­ute to­wards the ed­u­ca­tion of the as­pir­ing and de­ter­mined youth of the King Cetshwayo Dis­trict.

‘Skills de­vel­op­ment is a na­tional pri­or­ity in South Africa and a crit­i­cal fac­tor to the fu­ture suc­cess of the coun­try,’ said the or­gan­i­sa­tion.

‘Meet­ing South Africa’s skills needs re­quires in­put from nu­mer­ous pub­lic and gov­ern­ment in­sti­tu­tions, as well as pri­vate or­gan­i­sa­tions.

‘If we talk about skills de­vel­op­ment, we talk about chang­ing lives and en­hanc­ing the po­ten­tial of em­ploy­ment and align­ment of skills to the econ­omy.

‘In view of this, RBIDZ has pledged to play a mean­ing­ful and proac­tive role in pre­par­ing our youth for the work­place through a va­ri­ety of learn­ing and skills de­vel­op­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties.’

Through the pro­gramme, RBIDZ aims to re­dress im­bal­ances in the fields re­garded as scarce.

It is a di­rect re­sponse to the gov­ern­ment’s calls for re­form in the ‘scarce skills’ dis­ci­plines.

The fo­cus is on en­gi­neer­ing, sci­ence, town plan­ning, tech­nol­ogy and eco­nom­ics.

This year’s bur­sary re­cip­i­ents are fo­cused on me­chan­i­cal en­gi­neer­ing, built en­vi­ron­ment, geo­sciences, ap­plied ge­ol­ogy, in­for­ma­tion tech­nol­ogy and ac­count­ing, and the fu­ture looks bright for them.

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