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40 rigorously trained apprentices graduate from Samsung EEIP 2023 programme

A group of 40 rigorously trained apprentices graduated from the Samsung EEIP EASTC, a 24-month SETA accredited Air-Conditioning & Refrigeration Technician Apprenticeship programme aimed at bridging skill gap in ITC.

Samsung South Africa and the Ekurhuleni Artisans and Skills Training Centre (EASTC) in collaboration with the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) recently celebrated the first cohort of 40 rigorously trained and tested graduates for 2023 at the graduation ceremony of Samsung’s EEIP EASTC aimed at unlocking the existing ICT skill gap bridging skill gap in ITC through scarce skills development.

The programme was birthed in 2019 when Samsung became aware of the country’s critical shortage of technicians to service consumer electronics and hand-held devices in the market.

This led to the tech giant’s decision to sponsor a  24-month SETA accredited Air-conditioning and Refrigeration apprenticeship programme in partnership with the EASTC. The programme trained 40 apprentices from across Gauteng to work with mentors to grow their skills and address ICT education for unemployed youth in South Africa.

The ultimate outcome of this apprenticeship is not only to develop Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) skills in artisans training, Samsung said. It’s also aimed at ensuring that there’s a portfolio of practical experience and skills that are transferred to improve the EASTC youth’s employability.

Likewise, the selected group have excelled in their training, which entailed rigorous testing to be certified by Energy and Water Sector Education and Training Authority (EWSETA) as qualified technicians.

This vigorously trained group of technicians have graduated and completed all the requirements, including trade testing to be certified by Energy and Water Sector Education and Training Authority.

Proud of the calibre of graduates the 2023 programme has produced, Hlubi Shivanda, director of business operations and innovation and corporate affairs at Samsung South Africa had this to say: “This graduation celebration is one of our proudest moments. Since the launch of our R280-million worth Equity Equivalent Investment Programme (EEIP) in 2019, our mission has been to empower the country’s youth in the ICT sector and this programme has now produced incredible results.”

A fully funded bursary programme providing for tuition, equipment and stipends. It’s but one of Samsung’s EEIP initiatives focused on harnessing the power of technology to train and inspire young people to pursue their ambitions.

Furthermore, it lays bare Samsung’s unwavering commitment in advancing economic opportunities for all as well as racial and gender equality – through impactful educational initiatives such as this, as well as BEE focused initiatives that are guaranteed to change the lives of South Africans from underserved and historically marginalised communities by increasing their prospects for employability or entrepreneurship. (N.B: Samsung empowerment efforts have been awarded a level 1 B-BBEE status in 2021).

Simon Ndukwana EASTC CEO said: “As a college, we are very grateful for the partnership with Samsung and the positive impact that this programme is continuing to have on our students. This programme is very important to our students because it is turning them into qualified and accredited artisans with critical ICT skills needed by the country’s economy. This essentially means that the prospects of employment for our students are now raised even higher.”

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