False Bay TVET College; ensuring a pipeline of new facilitators for the green sector

False Bay TVET College is aware that the world and especially Africa is feeling the negative consequences of climate change. This disastrous impact will continue to increase and intensify over the coming years. The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) report on climate change states that in Africa alone, 220 million people are living in drought each year.
From left to right, back to front: Mr Jeremy Schuster, Ms Karin Hendricks-College Principal, Mr Marlon Higgins, Ms Nonhlanhla Mcimeli, Mr Akhona Winisi and Mr Sinithemba Mpati
From left to right, back to front: Mr Jeremy Schuster, Ms Karin Hendricks-College Principal, Mr Marlon Higgins, Ms Nonhlanhla Mcimeli, Mr Akhona Winisi and Mr Sinithemba Mpati 

As part of the college’s strategic goals - to deliver training relevant to the needs of industry and the changing environment - False Bay TVET College recognises that more must be done to address climate change and global warming. This includes the increased deployment of renewable energy and decarbonising our economies as a matter of urgency.  Expansion of programmes to support the green economy is a strategic focus of the college and the college is committed to find opportunities to expand training in this area.

To support this, False Bay TVET College entered into an agreement with merSeta, backed by The South African Renewable Energy Technology Centre (SARETEC), to train three technical mentors for the solar photovoltaic service technician qualification that is currently being developed. 

Three students were recruited as part of an exciting partnership to train technical mentors and expose the students to relevant industry experience.

Ms Nonhlanhla Mcimeli, Mr Sinithemba Mphati and Mr Akhona Winisi were recruited by False Bay TVET College to be trained as technical mentors for the new qualification over three years. The candidates training journey started in February 2020, where they were at Nelson Mandela University in Port Elizabeth to complete the advanced certificate in technical training.  

To develop technical skills in industry, the candidates received further training at the Volkswagen South Africa (VWSA) training centre in Uitenhage. The practical modules included:
  • Basic and advanced electrical circuits
  • Testing of basic and advanced electrical circuits
  • Testing of electrical motors and starters
  • Building of electrical panels
  • Fault-finding
  • PLC training
  • Electronics

Due to the impact of the Covid-19 Lockdown, not all training at the VWSA Technical Centre could be concluded. To mitigate the impact of the lockdown, the candidates were relocated to False Bay TVET College Westlake Campus, where they received further training and were assessed at the College’s electrical faculty workshops over 10 days. During this time, the students were exposed to practical training and introduced to various aspects of False Bay TVET College. 

During the second year of training, the candidates will be placed at host employers to complete work integrated learning to meet the requirements to do a trade test and qualify as an electrician.

In year three, the technical mentors will be trained at SARETEC. This training will be vital to develop knowledge and skills to prepare a new generation of Artisans, in the solar photovoltaic service technician qualification. These students are the future facilitators within programmes that will support the green economy.

This partnership will equip the new generation of TVET facilitators with skills aligned to the needs of industry and equip the next generation with the skills to participate in the green economy and mitigate the negative impact of climate change.

False Bay TVET College is committed to investing in students who show potential by providing them with relevant training and industry experience. This will ensure that they are well equipped to deliver the integrated training that is needed to ensure the relevant skills transfer to students. 

“We are very excited about the positive impact that this programme will have on our institution in the future. We are busy developing the next cohort of TVET lecturers with the most up-to-date skills and knowledge,” says Melanie Vermaak, False Bay TVET College acting deputy: academic services. 

“A focus on alternative energy sources is about making an investment in our future. An investment in human resources to support this initiative. The two go hand in hand if we want a sustainable future in terms of green energy,” says Ms Vermaak. 

29 Jan 2021 13:29