Addressing Youth Unemployment
In South Africa today over half of our young people are unemployed.
Yet despite this, there is a serious skills shortage, particularly in industries which require technically trained professionals.
Many high-school students who attend under-resourced schools in disadvantaged areas struggle to achieve a Bachelor-level pass in matric. Engineering is listed as a scarce profession in South Africa and this shortage of engineers is a major concern as there has been declining interest and enrolment of young people, especially women.
South Africa only produces approximately 1 500 engineering graduates annually, of which only about half go on to practice engineering. In fact SA has fewer engineers than doctors. Choosing engineering as a career and staying the distance depends on the access to the necessary STEM curriculum and having access to effective guidance and role models. Current economic recession is being felt at all levels, particularly by students from disadvantaged homes. These students often face daily hurdles like getting to school and going without a daily nutritious meal.