Talent nurturing as part of a broad based skills development strategy for South Africa’s economy, but particularly the country’s maritime economic sector, remains a top priority according to the South African Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA).
The remarks by SAMSA Chief Operations Officer, Mr Sobantu Tilayi came at the weekend as the government agency hosted a send-off event for one of its employees, Mr Siphosenkosi Mthembu who jetted off on Saturday to Malmo, Sweden for a two-year academic study at the World Maritime University.
Mr Mthembu will be pursuing a Master’s level course of study in Shipping and Logistics, supported by both the Transport Education Training Authority (TETA) and SAMSA.
Mr Mthembu embarks on the academic study in Europe having spent close on six (6) years as an employee of SAMSA in its certification unit, a service record that began in 2013 shortly after he’d completed his junior degree in maritime studies at the Durban University of Technology (DUT), following to which he also acquired a post graduate degree in maritime studies through the University of KwaZulu-Natal.
SAMSA’s support of Mr Mthembu includes his retention as an employee of the organization on his return in a year and a half from 2018.
Speaking shortly after an event on Thursday last week to bid Mr Mthembu farewell, and which was attended by some of his family members, Mr Tilayi said that while South Africa’s economy currently was being battered on all sides by indicators that clearly reflected that not all was well, it was not time to fold arms and prepare for better times.
The drive towards improvement of education and skills development and placement of especially talented South African through institutions of learning, in the country and abroad, should not slow down but speed up
“We are very tight on skills particularly in the maritime economic sector and it is initiatives of this nature that we want to support as SAMSA. It is people like Sipho who’ve demonstrated talent that we want to lend all the support we can.”
For Mr Tilayi’s full remarks, click on the three minutes video below.
For his part, Mr Mthembu was ecstatic for having gained the opportunity and support to further his maritime education studies particularly at an international institution dedicated to education and training in the sector. He will be joining the ranks of several other South Africans who have studied at World Maritime University since the programme was initiated by SAMSA jointly with other partners about four years.
For a brief chat with Mr Mthembu click on the three minutes video below.
Curriculum for eight (8) new national maritime occupational qualifications completed in record time, now for SAQA ratification.
Cape Town: 17 November 2016
The reorganization and further development of South Africa’s maritime sector education and training now formally in its sixth year continues to gain impetus.
This was evidenced by the formal completion of yet another curriculum development initiative for eight (8) national occupational certificate courses in Cape Town this week.
Highly significant is that the curriculum development initiative, the second project of its kind driven by the maritime industry in collaboration with the Quality Council for Trades and Occupations (QCTO), the South African Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA) and the Transport Education and Training Authority (TETA) among others, began in May 2016 with an initial set of seven national maritime sector occupational qualifications, and was completed in under six months with eight courses – a record time.
This emerged during the formal signing off and hand-over of the developed qualifications’ curriculum documentation to QTCO officials at an event held Cape Town on Tuesday.
The eight national maritime sector occupation qualifications for which a new curriculum was developed include;
Port Operations Master,
Marine Electro-Technical Officer,
Aids to Navigation Manager,
Aids to Navigation Technician,
Traffic Controller (Vessel Tracking System),
Maritime Search & Rescue Mission Coordinator
According to SAMSA senior manager, curriculum development; Mr Edward Pines, the qualifications conceptualized and proposed by SAMSA consistent with the objectives of the Operation Phakisa (Ocean Economy) project, will once formally endorsed by the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA), greatly enhance the position of holders both locally and for the African region, while providing international recognition. (For Mr Pine’s full remaks Click Here)
However, more crucial to development of the set of qualifications, said Mr Pines, was the direct involvement and input of the country’s maritime sector industries, the critical guidance role played by the QCTO, as well as highly useful contributions by the TETA.
The QCTO is one of three national quality councils established in 2010 in terms of the Skills Development Act, with its role being to oversee the design, implementation, assessment and certification of occupational qualifications on the Occupational Qualifications Sub-Framework (OQSF).
The TETA on the other hand, established in 2000 in terms of the Skills Development Act (1998) fulfills the role of a quality assurer consistent with the country’s Skills Development Framework in eight subsectors of the transport sector that include Aerospace, Forwarding & Clearing, Freight Handling, Maritime, Rail, Road Freight, Road Passenger and Taxi Sub Sectors.
Essentially, the qualifications curriculum development team for the set of maritime national occupation qualifications comprised qualification development facilitators, learner qualification development facilitators, a team of Community Expert Practitioners as well as representatives of the respective organizations.
At Tuesday’s handover function, representing the QCTO and TETA – the latter a project funder and development quality facilitator – were several senior officials among them, Mr Mandlenkosi Ndukula and Mr Victor Muhlberg respectively.
Both described the process of development of the eight national qualifications, in record time, as an important milestone in the national effort for reorganization and further development of education and skills in the country’s maritime economic sector.
Mr Ndukula praised SAMSA for spearheading the process and for remaining involved in gallant efforts to ensure that the maritime sector’s education and skills development expanded exponentially also to the Higher Education and Training band in which Technical Education and Vocational Training (TEVT) colleges operate.
“The expansion of maritime education and training to this TVET sector will, without doubt, have positive impact in the upskilling of people,” he said.
Mr Muhlberg who said he’d worked closely with SAMSA for a number of years, described the process as indicative of the huge process to be achieved when there was greater collaboration among stakeholders.
He said the latest batch of eight qualifications had brought to 13 the total number of maritime sector full qualifications developed recently in addition to about 16 part-qualifications.
“We were signing off today the second batch of qualifications to the QCTO and from whom they will be taken over to the SAQA for registration in the National Qualifications Framework. It is a very big achievement and we are very proud of what we have done here,’ said Mr Muhlberg
Also full of praise for the high level of cooperation experienced by the qualifications curriculum development team and which greatly contributed to process speed, was Yolandi Raath-Booyens, a project manager and qualifications development facilitator.
She described the experience as ‘inspiring.’
She said the developed set of qualifications would benefit not just the maritime and marine transport subsector but also the country’s fishing subsector. This was in reference to the Commercial Diver qualification in three stages, Class 4 30m SCUBA Commercial Diver, Class 3 30m SSDE Commercial Diver, and Class 2 50m Air-Diver.