Assisting learners at the newly-launched Technology for Youth Academy are (standing, from left) Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University’s Karl du Preez and Isabel van Gend, with the Automotive Industry Development Centre (AIDC) Eastern Cape’s Hoosain Mahomed and Priscilla Veldman.
The Youth for Technology Academy is a unique initiative that its creators, the Automotive Industry Development Centre (AIDC) Eastern Cape and Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (NMMU), believes will transform communities by enriching the Metro’s Grade 8 to 12 Secondary school learners.
The programmes of the Academy, based largely at NMMU’s Missionvale Campus, help learners increase subject percentiles and pass rates in Mathematics, Science and English and also provide study skills for lifelong learning as well as soft skills training.
Learners are also exposed to the world of engineering, technology, renewable energy and innovation by means of practical modules within the Academy’s “Technology Camp” hosted at the Engineering Faculty at NMMU during a Winter school.
AIDC Eastern Cape General Manager Hoosain Mahomed said the academy would make a tangible difference to the academic aptitude and success of learners in their chosen study fields and career paths.
“The mix of resources available in one accessible place, presented in a world-class facility by leading educators makes the academy a shining light for the region and its socio-economic development”, Mahomed said.
The AIDC EC aims to boost participants in the academy and the level of education by inviting business to sponsor the school-going children of their employees or learners from schools in their area.
“One of the greatest priorities of responsible adults today is the education of their children, so companies can build employee morale while making a wise social investment,” Mahomed said.
Investment in the Academy would earn business Socio Economic Development (SED) BBBEE rating points under the Skills Development Category and deductions through the Section 18A certificates, the AIDC EC said.
The academy offers several programmes including: The Study Toolbox: a fun and interactive study skills course, Get Ahead in Technology and Engineering: an interactive holistic academic programme which supports learners in Maths, Science and English, Career Exploration, Autumn School (which focuses on physical science revision), and Technology Camp which exposes learners to technology and engineering.
The School for Life provides a safe environment for learners to do their homework, study and do online research. It also will equip individuals with an array of life skills including interview and presentation skills, resume development, time management and basic financial management.
“Together with NMMU we are very excited about the academy and its potential contribution to the fabric of our community, the success of which is driven by quality education,” Mahomed said.