ABSA scheme bridges employment, skills divide
by MTHULISI SIBANDA
JOHANNESBURG – ABSA announced plans to expands its successful Further Education and Training (FET) Workplace Observation programme aimed bridging the skills gap in South Africa.
The initiative also forms part of plans to address employment challenges in the country.
eAbsa has also rolled out the programme in Kwa-Zulu Natal and the Western Cape provinces.
On Wednesday, Absa announcded further aims to take FET Workplace Observation programme to FET Colleges across more provinces in South Africa.
Meanwhile, accounting students from five FET colleges across Gauteng province, getting ready to enter the job market will become some of the most employable graduates thanks to a R1 million funded programme.
The programme expands upon the concept of the country’s ‘Take a Girl Child to Work Day’, having provided the first set of 50 students the opportunity to create a critical foundation into their careers through practical experience and observations in the world of work for a full business week.
“Specialising in a range of areas – from retail to commercial administration and small to medium-sized enterprise business and finance, Absa’s FET Workplace Observation programme offered a real opportunity for students to unlock their potential and take the first step to what could be a long and fruitful career in the financial sector,” explains Kudzi Samushonga, Absa Retail Regional Executive.
Armed with data showing that about 3.1 million students graduate every year and only 30 percent of them are employable, Oscar Siziba, Gauteng Provincial Head of Business Banking assures however that the programme is valuable for everyone.
“There is a need to bridge the growing skills gap not only to transfer skills with prospects of securing permanent employment in critical sectors of the economy, such as the financial services industry but transfer generic skills such as application of numeracy, communication, literacy and team working – relevant to virtually every job and sector,” adds Siziba.
Absa joined forces with colleges in Gauteng in a strategic partnership to benefit learners with their National Vocational Qualifications to gain practical work experience last year.
The partnership was a direct response to a call made by the Minister of Higher Education Dr Blade Nzimande, when he urged private companies to assist FET colleges’ learners with workplace observation, which was compulsory for them to complete their studies.
– CAJ News
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