Training empowers youth

2017-02-22 06:01
Youth involved in the Microsoft Certified Solution Associate (MCSA) programme are, from the left, Ipotseng Coodi, Axe Torque (IT server trainer), Brian Gaobodiwe, Jeanet Sitase, Zweli Simelani and Tumisho Modise.Photos: Supplied

Youth involved in the Microsoft Certified Solution Associate (MCSA) programme are, from the left, Ipotseng Coodi, Axe Torque (IT server trainer), Brian Gaobodiwe, Jeanet Sitase, Zweli Simelani and Tumisho Modise.Photos: Supplied

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Ipotseng Coodi (26) from Pampierstad counts her blessings and regards herself as ready to join the worki force upon the completion of her 12-month Microsoft Certified Solution Associate (MCSA) programme.

Coodi, who studies Information Technology (IT) through the University of South Africa (Unisa), is one of the five fortunate young people from disadvantaged communities who have been empowered to undergo the internship programme in the Pho­kwane Municipality.

According to Coodi, the programme had prevented her from joining the unfortunate group who would need work experience to find a job.

She is thankful for Letlhogonolo Modise, the administrator of the programme, who approached her to undergo an on-the-job IT programme at the Phokwane Municipality.

According to Modise, the programme is a pilot project for unemployed youth from rural areas.

He said the skills deve-lopment programme was meant to equip the unemployed youth after the realisation that they were beset with many challenges. The challenges that the youth in rural areas face are, amongst others, abject poverty, teenage pregnancy, crime and alcohol and drug abuse.

Those were the reasons that he approached Torque IT and requested their assistance to give students training, which they agreed to.

“I also approached the Phokwane Local Municipality to give the students necessary job training,” Modise said.

“The programme taught me a lot, as I did not know anything about the IT world, although I am graduating in 2018,” said Coodi.

The internship programme commenced with class training in April at Torque IT’s head office in Rivonia, Johannesburg.

After that, the youth members joined the Phokwane Municipality for workplace training.

This will finish later this year, in May.

“The R3 500 stipend also played a big role in changing my life, as I was unemployed at the time.”

She said the internship programme has made her look foward to next year, when she will be gradua-ting at Unisa and at the same time be awarded her international MCSA certificate from Microsoft.

The interns are following a curriculum which is aligned to the MCSA Windows Server 2012 certification path.

They will receive their certificates after passing all three of their international exams.

Although she is looking foward to opening her own successful IT company one day, she believes that it would be in her interest to start in a working environment first.

Emphasising the imperativeness of the youth being developed, Modise said that empowering the youth was important, as it would help them to succeed in life.

“It is shameful that when youth empowerment is mentioned, people think that it is only the function of the government to empower the youth.

“You, as an individual, can empower the people around you.”

Torque IT is accredited by Media, Information and Communication, Technologies Sector Education and Training Authority (Mict Seta) and is devoted to addressing and narrowing the skills gap within the IT sector.

According to Lesego Motshwane, the business development manager at the Torque Career Campus, Torque IT is a key resource for businesses that want to invest in learnerships, internships and skill programmes.

“Torque IT has a vast, active client base hosted at the four main operating branches in South Africa,” she said.

But being on the internship is the end of the road for this partnership, as the Phokwane Municipality did not sign an agreement to employ them.

That was upon the enquiry as to whether the municipality has any plans of supporting the unemployed youth through similar workplace training programmes.

“Currently there is no vacancy available on the structure for IT staff.

“The municipality does not have any memorandum of understanding where it states that the learners will be appointed permanently after the experiential training with the programme administrators,” said Kgalalelo Letshabo in her response.

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