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Innovative international partnership aims to kick-start careers for unemployed graduates

02 Jul 2015

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According to the World Economic Forum (WEF) Global Risk 2014 report “South Africa now has the third highest unemployment rate in the world for people between the ages of 15 to 24”. Such statistics present significant concerns about our future – and the social and economic consequences of such massive economic inactivity.

Fortunately these dire levels of unemployment are not reflected in young South Africans who have achieved tertiary education. As the survey reports job tenure for tertiary education graduates as almost three times that of grade 12 school leavers.

To maximise impact in this segment, TSiBA and the Netherlands Hanze University Foundation have joined forces to develop a programme called ‘Umbono’ (to have a clear vision in IsiXhosa). The programme aims to provide unemployed graduates from across different social and educational backgrounds with a range of pragmatic and effective skills to source employment openings, and then to maximise opportunities when they present.

Graham Moore, Head of TSiBA Career Centre says “it is in this segment that significant impact can be achieved as we know that there is a market for talented young graduates, many of whom are the first in their families to have achieved tertiary education, and most of whom are ‘black’ as defined in the broad-based black economic empowerment codes.

Umbono works to enable its attendees to get a ‘foot in the employment door’, as a first entry into what the programme believes can ultimately lead to life-long employment and all of the benefits which follow from this. Also social and economic spins-offs of gaining entry into employment cannot be underemphasized. This changes lives, the lives of those to whom employment is achieved, and the lives of all of those around them. Imagine if the South African graduate unemployment rate sat at only 2%. This would mean an additional 250 000 active participants in the formal economy”. 

One of the Umbono candidates, Nadia Fisher said “The programme was a wonderful learning experience, equipping me with knowledge and tools to help me work and behave appropriately in the workplace, and improve my interpersonal skills not only in corporate life but in my personal life as well”.   

Also, in partnership with Hanze Foundation, the Umbono programme aspires ultimately to match the 95% employment rate of TSiBA Education graduates”

The initiative is also actively sourcing potential employment partners for Umbono candidates – and interested parties can contact
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The Tertiary School in Business Administration (TSiBA) was founded in 2004 with a vision to “Ignite Opportunity”.  Our mission is to be an innovative learning community that graduates entrepreneurial leaders who ignite opportunity and social change.

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