The newly launched Eskom EAL Welding School will offer placements for at least 700 students to be trained as high class welders.
The new school opened its doors last Thursday and is located in Midrand.
“Over the next seven years, Eskom will train a minimum of 700 students to be welders – and not simply regular welders, but high class welders,” chief executive officer Brian Dames stated.
The school forms an important part of Eskom’s Professional Welding Capability Development Programme, which is designed to boost its capacity to train welders to international quality standards. This is to meet Eskom’s needs for the construction of brand new power plants along with the maintenance and upgrading of existing plants.
The school, which at the moment has 150 students in numerous phases of training, was established to deal with the skills shortage in the country and it is going to make certain that the parastatal will have the ability to replace skills which in fact had to be brought in from other countries with home-grown welding specialists.
The courses offered to welders encompasses on-the-job training at power stations along with classroom theory.
“It is essential for state institutions to develop skills in-house that will significantly help to relieve the country’s shortage as well as to stimulate economic and employment opportunity,” said Public Enterprises Minister Malusi Gigaba.
“This is a vital and strategic technical skills development programme, simply because welders will have the ability to work not only for Eskom, but will also be beneficial to the broader South African economy.”
The school is a collaboration involving the South African Institute of Welding (SAIW) and Eskom. At the conclusion of their 3 to 5 year schooling, students will receive a dual South African and international qualification accredited by the International Institute of Welding (IIW) and SAIW.
Eskom at present has a pipeline of 6 386 learners, with an emphasis on training artisans, engineers and technologists for future years with Eskom making an investment in excess of R1 billion a year, which represents more than 6% of the wage bill, in the training and development of its human resources.
Eskom chairman Zola Tsotsi pointed out that Eskom is committed to delivering technical skills development targets for their infrastructure requirements, and that the welding programme would provide South Africans career and skills opportunities in a scarce skills category.
For more information, contact Eskom directly – click here