From 15-19 July 2019, the University of Venda (Univen) and the Careers Exhibition and Information Association (CEIA) in Partnership with the Vhembe District, Department of Education held careers exhibition that has assisted 156 secondary schools and 13 586 grade 12 learners within Vhembe East District to make the right career choices. This Careers exhibition took place at Univen Auditorium.
The 2019 Univen Careers Exhibition was attended by 40 institutions including Univen. There were eleven universities, five TVET colleges, fourteen public and private colleges, five government departments and institutions and three Setas.
“In the last four years, this exhibition has attracted a total of over 75 000 learners,” said the Director of CHETL, Prof Humbulani Nancy Mutshaeni during the official opening of the 2019 Univen Careers Exhibition. She said although this number is encouraging, there is still a high number of graduates roaming our streets looking for employment for months and even years after completion of their studies. Prof Mutshaeni expressed this as shocking. “One feels very much dismayed that unemployment of the youth remains unabated in our country.”
She continued to highlight that it is even worse, to note the number of learners opting to take gap year, simply because they have not applied on time to their institution of choice or they are not getting acceptance in their study of choice or because they are still trying to decide on the career they want to follow. “We all wish we could do something about this. We really need to make concerted effort as a community, to pull our strides to ensure that our learners are properly guided.”
“Without the engagement of all stakeholders, parents, teachers, professionals as well as our government, job opportunities will remain a wish and dream that is difficult to achieve. In tandem with the efforts and funding that government and parents put into these learners’ education, we need to steer our education in the right direction. We need to work with the teachers of these learners so that throughout their schooling period, learners are made aware, in their schools, of possible fields of study and careers they can follow, and are guided properly by their teachers to make suitable and informed choices,” she told exhibitors.
Prof Mutshaeni advised exhibitors that this exhibition should be but one of those efforts that we all put together, guiding and assisting, influencing and motivating our youth and learners to align their choices and skill sets with their personal abilities and attributes as well as with local and global employment demands. “The Department of Higher Education and Training has identified the top 100 skills required by our country. These are areas of top priority of service in our nation, but also areas of high potential for employment. We need to rigorously find ways to encourage our learners to realize these opportunities for future, especially in the Natural Sciences- and technology-oriented careers.”
During his welcome message, Dr Takalani Dzaga, Director Communications and Marketing acknowledged the presence of several colleagues that he used to work with in the past 20 years. He said it is also worth indicating that Univen is a member of CEIA and told the audience that Univen will continue to support the existence of CEIA. Dr Dzaga said, “annually, Univen is one of universities that organizes a well-attended exhibition with a large number of secondary schools and the number of exhibitors. This is because we have a good working relationship
with the Department of Education. Even though we are situated in the far north of the country, we have produced alumni who are occupying strategic positions in the country. He gave an example of Mr Ronald Lamola who was recently appointed as the Minister of Justice and Correctional Services.
Dr Dzaga continued to highlight that Univen is situated in the area with several best performing schools. He encouraged all the exhibitors to assist learners and encourage them to make informed decisions about their careers.
Mr Takalani Nyelisani, Schools Liaison Officer highlighted that this is the first international Careers Exhibition at Univen. “We have Botho University which has campuses in Lesotho and Gaborone in Botswana.”
Dr Amos Mukwevho came in with a message of support. He said Vhembe district has 162 schools and they appreciate what CEIA is doing for this district, “reaching out to our learners.” He told the audience that there are vultures out there waiting to catch our learners. “We will continuously look up to you in assisting our learners to make wise choices. We look forward to your dedication and commitment. Let us strengthen this relationship and encouraged learners to do well.”
Mr Gideon Ramulifho said he is honored to be invited to this exhibition even though he has retired. He saluted people who are still doing well in these careers exhibition. “Even if you are a good athlete, sometimes you need to give the baton to others. He spoke about the fourth industrial revolution. When you are retired, you think you have rested but there is always a lot to do,” he said.
CEIA Limpopo Provincial Representative, Mr Abicky Kgolane thanked the Univen’s Department of Communications and Marketing for attracting large number of both exhibitors and learners. He said Univen has raised the bar high. He thanked all media partners and participating exhibitors. “The media is a very important tool that’s why members of the media should not be forgotten in any event because they ensure that the information doesn’t end here but to the whole world. Even students and parents who did not attend this careers exhibition will get information regarding application processes.” He encouraged exhibitors to go all out and make sure that they touch the lives of learners countrywide Including across the borders.
Muvhango Emmanuel (19), a Grade 12 learner from Mpandeli Secondary School in Tshifudi said he has learned a lot from this careers exhibition, and he will start to apply as soon as he arrives at home because time is no longer on his side.
Mr Justice Lebopa, Assistant Schools Liaison Officer directing the Programme.
Department of Communications & Marketing
University of Venda
Tel: (015) 962 8525
Date: 26 July 2019