Jobless youth positive about the future

2018-01-07 06:03

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Despite the promise of free education in December by President Jacob Zuma, the hard reality facing many bright-eyed matriculants ready to take on the world is that those with limited chances of getting a tertiary education will face unemployment and poverty.

However, three who City Press spoke to remained optimistic about their futures.

Ronald Malinga (17) passed his matric with a bachelor’s pass at Education Alive School in central Johannesburg. He plans to take a gap year and then find work in 2019.

“I have been sending my CV and applying for jobs to the relevant places,” he said. He did not enrol at a university in time and his attempts to file late applications failed.

He is exploring options to academic education like starting a business by taking savings from his prospective job, which was something his uncle did.

Mike Schussler of, said those in the class of 2017 who did not get into university would not be easily absorbed by the job market.

“Over 50% of our matriculants under the age of 34 have not found permanent employment and it’s not getting better.”

He said the government should instill confidence in the country so that businesses would invest and create employment for school-leavers.

Nolwazi Mogoje (19) is celebrating her successful matric results and is an ex-pupil of Education Alive School.

She feels like she is at a crossroads concerning her career prospects.

While she would like to study either business or human resources management, the reality is that her family would face serious financial problems if she went through tertiary education.

“I could take a gap year and go work,” she said.

Her family’s financial constraints have had a lot to do with her indecision, and also not believing that the story of free higher education was real.

Mogoje said she believes education is the key to financial freedom because she has been raised to think that way.

For Limkholwe Ndlovu (18) matriculating with a bachelor’s pass and three distinctions have made him feel “on top of the world”.

Although he wants to study at a university, he is sure the prospects of getting funding to do so are bleak despite President Jacob Zuma’s announcement in December.

“I am open to working in the meantime,” he said. He is considering making a living as a part-time photographer after being rewarded with a new camera for passing matric. I’ll probably start a photography company. I already have a social-media footprint.”

He said that while education is a ladder for people to get to where they want to be, sometimes people are not cut out for higher education and should find alternatives to get to the top.

Schussler said entrepreneurship should be taught at schools, to instil essential business skills and help create employment.

“Our unemployment situation is in the top worst 100 economies in the world and it won’t go away overnight,” he said, adding that businesses were there to create wealth and cannot employ everyone.

Therefore, it would help if the government creates more learnership programmes and gives firms tax breaks to encourage them to run such projects.

Professor Sarah Gravett, the dean of the faculty of education at the University of Johannesburg, advises matriculants who have not been placed at an institution of higher learning to visit the department of higher education and training’s website.


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Read more on:    jacob zuma  |  education  |  unemployment  |  youth

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