Graduation season creates a special atmosphere in South Africa.
Mamas and families proudly make their way to universities across the country to celebrate their pride and joys. The gents bring out their best suits and the ladies get their beautiful dresses on, all in preparation for that life-changing walk across the stage.
However, once the glitz and glam is over, it’s back to reality. Some have the option of studying further and others prepare for the working world. The working world doesn’t come easy, and youth unemployment in the country affects us all - not just the youth.
In his inaugural speech, President Cyril Ramaphosa introduced the "send me" campaign to champion a better South Africa and now the 12th annual Soweto Career Day Expo plans to walk in his foot steps.
The theme this year will be around career awareness and how to be employed.
Kgupi Gunguluza is the CEO of Careers Inc., the organisation behind this remarkable initiative. Gunguluza says he has invited speakers from different backgrounds to address the youth from the education, training, recruitment and human resource sector.
Gunguluza’s event is set to be largest career awareness event in Soweto to date, dedicated to finding solutions for high levels of unemployment in Gauteng.
In the face of the 4th Industrial Revolution, young South Africans need to be trained in a range of emerging new disciplines from computer sciences and biotechnology, to nanotechnology, coding, robotics and artificial intelligence.
Gunguluza says, “Research chairs focused on these emerging 21st century technologies should be established at our higher education institutions to give our economy the skills and dynamism it needs to be competitive. This year, Careers Inc. has partnered with Intouch Africa, a specialist sponsorship marketing and events project management consulting agency that has grown our vision for the Career Expo.”
The event is not just a careers expo, but also a deeper look into the vital skills needed for employment in South Africa.
“The career expo will also provide an excellent networking opportunity for private and public sector delegates to exchange valuable developmental concepts. These ideas will assist our youth to gain access to employment and development opportunities in Gauteng. The Expo seeks to deal with those many issues and create a platform for human resource managers from corporate and government, training institutions, training facilitators, universities and recruitment agencies.”
Gunguluza aims to connect and get these agencies to work together to deal with the challenges openly in order to create a working methodology. Ultimately, the aim is to accelerate employment.
When I asked Gunguluza who the career day and expo is for, he replied enthusiastically.
“The event is targeted at pupils of all high school grades but places much emphasis on pupils in grades 11 and 12 as well as unemployed and out-of-school youth to create their foundation for career development. The Soweto Career Day and Expo will be a two-day event, which will cover the broad spectrum of careers available in different sectors.”
Schools from different districts in Soweto and Johannesburg have been invited to participate in the event, whereby the first day will be a career convention with a specified number of top learners per school.
Gunguluza continues, “Learners will be exposed to information and communications technology, construction and engineering, mining, minerals and energy, banking, investments and financial services, hospitality and tourism, government careers and transport.”
I asked Gunguluza what can young people expect. He explained, “The event will have breakaway sessions with executives in specific industries interacting with learners that are interested in that specific field or industry.”
Employers and government agencies mandated to offer bursars and scholarships, and those promoting graduate employment and placement of students and youth into workplace will be exhibiting at the Soweto Career Day Expo.
Gunguluza explains with a smile, “They will also be presenting their experiential learning opportunities, with appropriate sector employers at the expo.”
Event : The 12th annual Soweto Career Expo 2019
Venue: Diepkloof Multi-purpose hall, Soweto
Date : 23 and 24 May 2019
For more details contact: e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org