Absa joined forces with Further Education and Training (FET) colleges in Gauteng in a strategic partnership to benefit learners with their National Vocational Qualifications to gain practical work experience.
The partnership was launched in Johannesburg. FET colleges’ learners in Gauteng will receive industrial experience, which is much needed for them to complete their academic training. More than 50 learners from eight FET colleges in Gauteng will undergo a five days workplace observation programme.
Kudzi Samushonga, Gauteng Regional Executive of Absa, says “This partnership resonates well with our aspiration to leave everything we touch, better than that in which it was when we found it. The future success of our communities and the economies in which we operate relies on this next generation having the right skills to fulfil their potential. Our commitment is underpinned by Barclays’ clear sense of business purpose – to help individuals, communities, businesses and economies progress and grow. Our mission is to empower young people with the skills necessary to achieve financial and economic independence, as well as a sense of security.
We want to empower FET learners with industrial experience, which is compulsory for their academic qualifications. They will gain this experience through a five-day work shadow programme with Absa employees, which will give them first hand insights on the daily work that happens in the bank.”
At the end of the programme it is envisaged that the learners would have obtained the vocational training hours required and be more empowered to make better career choices. The programme will expose them to branch hosting, tellers, cash handling and enquiries and other experiences. It is expected that the work place observation programme will stimulate the learners’ interest to the banking sector.
Speaking at the launch, FET Colleges Provincial Task Team chairperson Gordon Maseko says: “We are happy to implement this unique partnership between Absa and the colleges. This will go a long way in addressing the financial skills shortage in the country. I hope that this will be a long-term project that will benefit our FET learners and make them employable.”
The partnership is 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.