Mechanical engineering students at the University of Johannesburg (UJ) are among the major beneficiaries of a learnership programme to strengthen innovation and skills development in mining and construction sectors.
The THINKBig Programme, a highly innovative and ground-breaking learnership programme, came to fruition with the recent signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the University’s Faculty of Engineering and the Built Environment and Barloworld Equipment South Africa.
The programme aims to ensure future sustainability by focusing on the value of after sales support for the growing customer fleets of Barloworld Equipment South Africa. UJ students, studying towards a three year National Diploma: Mechanical Engineering Technology, are selected on grounds of their skills for and inclination towards a career in the field following an interview process as well as psychometric testing.
UJ will offer theoretical training for two years and Barloworld will supply practical service training in the third year. The Barloworld sponsored programme will cover tuition fees, accommodation fees, as well as books for the selected students.
More than 40 applications for the THINKbig Programme were processed and six students, five men and one female, were selected.
“This MoU is an indication that we are committed to the industry. It is encouraging to see Barloworld investing in the nation’s development as this will translate our advances into gains for the country,” says Professor Tshilidzi Marwala, Executive Dean: Faculty of Engineering and the Built Environment.