Foreword By Deputy Minister - Artisanship: A Path To Greatness

There is a continuous need to produce qualified artisans to sustain industries and support economic growth within South Africa. In a range of national strategies the need for artisans has been elevated and identified as a priority area for skills development.

The National Development Plan states that the country should be producing 30 000 qualified artisans per year by 2030. At present, we are producing on average 13 000 qualified artisans per year and therefore the number has to more than double in the next seventeen years leading up to 2030.

This book, therefore, seeks to encourage young people to consider taking up careers along technical and artisanal skills. It further outlines in detail the Seven Steps to becoming a qualified Artisan, the hardships and bottlenecks, as well as prospects for employment and entrepreneurship. I would like to encourage our young people to consider studying at Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Colleges (formerly known as FET Colleges) in order to become qualified artisans. Artisans such as boilermakers, fitters and turners, electricians, riggers, millwrights, welders (coded), etc. are cashing in money in a big way. Try to get as much information as possible about artisanship so that you are part of the grinding wheels of development.

We want learners from as early as Grade 9-12 to be exposed to these interesting career pathways in order to avert the perpetual mismatch of skills in the country. The one important consideration for our young learners is to know which careers to study for, especially in the scarce and critical skills areas that our country needs. Inside the magazine, you will get a list of our 50 Public TVET Colleges that we have in the country and you can apply for admission at anyone of them and also apply for bursaries offered by the Department of Higher Education and Training to learners, especially those from families living below the poverty line. The Presidential Infrastructure built programme should actually be benefiting you direct, but for so long as you do not have the requisite skills, then these opportunities will be grabbed by people from other nations.

I strongly urge young people to carefully consider taking careers in Artisanship as their careers of choice. Our country needs skilled and qualified artisans for growth and economic development.

Mr Mduduzi Manana, MP
Deputy Minister: Higher Education and Training

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