EWC Diploma Ceremony 2017

26 May 2017

Graduates Encouraged to Consider Entrepreneurship as a Career to Defuse Unemployment

Seven hundred and ninety-four (794) graduates were conferred at the 13th edition of Ekurhuleni West TVET College's Graduation Ceremony, held on 26 May 2017 at the Transnet School of Excellence Hall in Kempton Park. Graduates comprised of students from all six campuses of the college, graduating in both National Certificate (Vocational) and N. Diploma.

Speaking at the graduation ceremony, guest of honour, Mr Mbuyiseni Ndlozi (MP), urged graduates to use their learnt skills to forge an entrepreneurial revolution. Mr Ndlozi, the youngest Member of Parliament, was invited to speak to the young graduates of EWC, as a shining example of having a society of skilled young people. In his keynote address, Ndlozi attributed the success of the graduates to their dedication, perseverance, hard work, and the sacrifices made by their parents. The Wits University PHD student sent a stern warning to graduates that while they have acquired much desired skills, their journey is still marred by the unemployment challenges hampering the country across all sectors. He challenged them to consider entrepreneurship as a career to overcome those challenges, and also to create jobs for others in order to achieve economic transformation.

"Many of you walked into the walls of college looking for a skill. Majority of the time, it is the skill you want to attain in order to get a job and make a living for yourself. This is based on the promise that lies ahead; a promise that if we indeed get skills, we will find jobs. We need an economic emancipation revolution; we need banks that believe and invest in black talent. We need a generation of skills not to find jobs - no! We need a generation of skills to create jobs for ourselves. I therefore call upon all of you to think of yourselves as job creators, and not job seekers," said Mr Ndlozi.

The College Council Chairperson, Dr Mpho Mohlala, used the ceremony to reintroduce the college’s Centre for Entrepreneurship, aimed at developing enterprising entrepreneurs within the college community. "When life seems to be giving you bitter lemons, make a sweet drink out of it! Consider being an entrepreneur and creating job opportunities for others. I am pleased to announce that the college has a Centre for Entrepreneurship, which is available for your use to empower yourselves with entrepreneurial education."

The college Principal and CEO, Ms Hellen Ntlatleng, highlighted the role played by the college in producing a skilled workforce, ready for the market, while emphasizing the importance of parents' involvement in their children's studies. The Principal advised that the demand for greater accountability brought in by Government, professional bodies, industry, commerce and other stakeholders, has increase the demand for participation and aspiration. As a result, students are compelled to invest more time and energy into their educational activities in order to remain relevant just as they are graduating.

Ms Ntlatleng applauded companies for allowing EWC students a space in their companies for internship and other forms of Work Based Learning. She said that their efforts demonstrated that educational is a societal issue. "We are once more giving our diplomandi and NC (V) students, with strings of distinctions, to you as a workforce, and we request that they be given an opportunity to become artisans and tradesmen. This is the way we would be closing the gap of the skills shortage of the country," she said with a beam.

The Principal then went on to acknowledge the sacrifices made by parents to ensure that their children are graduating. "You are actually the achievers today - deserve all the accolades and ululation. Your efforts are starting to pay. My appreciation to the parents once more- ke a le rata," she said.

The Principal concluded by urging the graduates to go out there to make a difference and add value to themselves, their families and the communities they live in.

The cream of the crop were rewarded with special awards presented by various sponsors at the ceremony, where parents got to ascend the stage with their top-achieving children. Awards ranged from technological gadgets to monetary prizes from sponsors such as ABSA, Future Managers, Technobridge, Excel Group, Sangari(SA), Transnet (SoE), Tsheare Kitchens and Dippenaar & Reinecke.

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