Principal's Message

Year-end Function 2017

Ms Hellen Manakedi Ntlatleng

19 October 2017 - St. George's Hotel

Programme Director, Vusi Thembekwayo; Chairperson of the College Council. Dr Mpho Mohlala and Council members present; Management and staff of EWC, ladies and gentlemen - good afternoon

It is that time of the year when we come together as a family to take stock of what EWC had for us over 2017. Each and every one of us should be in a position to ask oneself on the contribution made to make EWC, a leading college in South Africa.

We are just coming back from 2018-2021 Strategic Planning Review - which was a challenging exercise. In it, we were also reviewing Imagination of EWC in 2020. I hope that we remember that our Corporate Motto for 2017 was to Imagine the Possibilities.

"If you cannot imagine it – you cannot do it."

We will all agree that this does not need negative energy, which some of us have perfected the art thereof. Maybe we should ask ourselves once more if our negative energy is engraved somewhere to be able to be rewarded.

Allow me to remind you that in 2015-2016 our Business Motto was:

"If it is not visible, it is not measurable."

I can attest to the fact that Management has been able to produce evidence - actually scrolls and scrolls of the work done, for history to judge them fairly. I am forever indebted against you - ladies and gentlemen.

I am immensely proud of the work the college has been able to produce over the years and in 2017. We have displayed that TVET Colleges are at the centre of the Skills revolution of the country. Everybody in the sector and business world likes to associate themselves with EWC. Let us always remind ourselves that the student is in the centre of the college. We have produced a cohort of cadres, ready for the market.

Let us agree that EWC was built by a collective of us, and no individual, or individuals, will destroy us - from the grounds to the classroom. We are as strong as our weakest link. In whatever we do, let us avoid complacency, because we will be destroying our own souls.

In 2017, in particular - as I go down memory lane - there are a number of things to be proud of, namely:

  • EWC was able to send nine (9) students to the World Skills Competition South Africa, at the Durban ICC, representing Gauteng.
  • EWC was also able to host the Gauteng chapter of the World Skills Competition in our state-of-the-art kitchens.
  • Five (5) of EWC's lecturers were judges at the Albert Lethuli International Convention Centre - all from Germiston Campus - thanks very much.
  • At the end of the competition, we received two (2) silver medals in Mechatronics... 2nd to BMW - and in Electrical Installation, with a difference of one (1) mark from a private Training Centre in KZN.
  • EWC was among the nine (9) Public TVET colleges in the country to receive a clean audit from the Auditor General – we even received an award from the AG.
  • EWC recently received two (2) awards at the DHET Imbizo from the Minister’s office for being:
    • The best Financially Managed College;
    • The most progressive college in the artisan development field.
  • EWC was able to receive many donations from external funders, namely,
    • Three (3) Ford Rangers from Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa (Kathorus, Kempton and Tembisa Campuses).
    • Fiat Chrysler South Africa - parts of vehicles to be able to build three (3) cars (Boksburg Campus).
    • Engines from Volkswagen - about eight (8) donated (to Tembisa Campus).
    • ReadytoWear clothes and ReadytoWork training from ABSA (from the CEO herself,  Maria Ramos) as part of the Deputy President, Cyril Ramaphosa's project.
  • We were able to refurbish and equip the following engineering workshops:
    • Fitting and Turning at Kathorus Campus;
    • Electrical on DSPP Project at Tembisa Campus funded by DHET;
    • Electrical at Kempton Campus;
    • Welding at Kathorus Campus.
    I am proud to mention that they are all state-of-the-art equipment. Please make use of them and leave excuses that you were not trained.
  • Refurbishment of the Germiston Hall has been concluded.
  • EWC was able to complete construction of the Enterprise Hub at Kathorus Campus - hope the CfE is excited about a number of projects that would be taking place there.
  • EWC has started with a number of new building constructions e.g.:
    • Building of the Resource Centre and Auditorium at Boksburg Campus - construction at 50%.
    • Building of the Student Support Centre at Kathorus Campus – construction is at 40%.
    • Construction of the Hall and Auditorium was started a week ago.
    • Extension of all Engineering workshops at Tembisa Campus - handover to contractor has taken place.
    • Construction of the brick wall at Tembisa Campus is at 90%.

A number of construction projects are scheduled to start at the beginning of 2018. It should be also noted that a lot of money is being invested in these projects that are benefiting you and I, including students and the entire community. One cannot start comparing such constructions to iPads or tablets people want to use for their own benefit.

The college has invested in lecturers’ preparation rooms and resource centres, where there is connectivity - people are hardly ever there. The college has invested in inter-active boards and they are used as white-boards, thus damaged.

The 4th Industrial Revolution is around the corner - are we going to survive?

The college and DHET have been able to send people for training among others in other countries, namely:

  • Italy - one (1) staff member (DSPP);
  • Germany - five (5) staff members (DSPP);
  • Germany - three (5) staff members and two (2) students on an exchange programme;
  • China - two (2) students (Merseta);
  • China - one (1) staff member (DHET training);
  • New Zealand - three (3) staff members (IVETA Conference);
  • UK - four (4) staff members (QMS training);
  • Abu Dhabi - three (3) staff members (World Skills Competition).

Ladies and gentlemen, let me remind you of our moral obligation as far as teaching and learning is concerned, and that cannot be compromised. When and where it is being compromised, it shall be dealt with severely. The moral compass within me will not rest until this is understood and dealt with accordingly.

Whilst we enjoy this day, let us also remember that we have already set ourselves targets of results which are baselines for 2017 examinations results. Our average pass rate for NC (V) 2016 was 83,83% - up from 2015 which was 81,84%. I wish to recognise Kathorus for great improvement. I am expecting an 80% pass rate from you. In Report 191, Engineering was 63,63% - up from 53,10% and in Business Studies, it was 80,26% - up from 78,15%. I still stand by the fact that each student that enters the gates of EWC deserves to pass.

I am also proud to mention that our projects in DSPP and Artisan Development are progressing well, with students being placed at workplaces at all times. We need more projects of such a nature - it is cool to be a 21st Century Artisan. Artisan development is the way to go.

Colleagues, let me also make you aware, if you didn’t know, that in our recent Strategic Planning, we adopted a new Corporate motto, namely:

"Be Accountable Regardless."

It doesn’t matter what the situation, you are accountable for the job you have been appointed and you shall take that accountability. If you do not know – we shall teach you.

I am Accountable Regardless.

Let me encourage you by reminding you that being accountable gives you power, and accounting for your words enables your performance.

By accounting for your word, you can maintain a high level of workability for yourself and others as even when you cannot always keep your promise, you can still account for your word and thereby create a workable relationship and trust. Let us use time given in life to practice and demonstrate being accountable regardless.

Allow me to express my gratitude to a few individuals in our staff - Lerato Mokoena and Pretty Mbatha - the Auditor General sent greetings of appreciations to these individuals during the audit. They felt the good in you for responding on time and with correct and relevant documents and information needed. Thank you so much.

Much as it is not good to mention bad behaviour at such a function, because you sort of market people - I need to make it clear to some individuals that Campus Managers report to me, and they represent me at the different campuses. Whilst they share information to staff, they do not owe you explanations - please stop putting them in witness boxes to explain themselves. If you think you are bigger and better than them, you are surely misplaced. Look for a better place not to harass them.

Whilst concluding, let me thank the Almighty for the life given and opportunities before us that we use them correctly. Indeed, God is good - it is a good day for EWC. A brand I am happy to be associated with and will challenge at all times.

Let me also thank the College Council for the support and sharing of ideas with us. Well done, thy servants of God.

Give my many thanks to your families that give you support throughout the year to be able to perform your functions.

Thanks to our programme director for always availing yourself to EWC - we are indebted to you. Every word that you utter it always engraved in our hearts. Thank you - thank you - thank you.

Though last to be mentioned, but not least in love, thanks to the Corporate Services division and staff members who made this possible. Your ownership in it touches my heart.

When you drink your glass of wine, remember it is not the last supper, but a way of thanking you. I do not have silver and gold to give you.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!!

Enjoy the day.

Hellen Manakedi Ntlatleng


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