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Linking students with the world of work

Held annually in Pretoria and across the regions in July and August, the Unisa Careers Fairs allow final-year and postgraduate students, as well as students who have completed their qualifications, to network with some of SA’s leading employers.

Mandu Makhanya (DCCD) (centre) with two of the Team RED Careers Fair ushers

Speaking at Muckleneuk Campus on 5 July 2017, Mandu Makhanya from the Directorate of Counselling and Career Development said she believes this platform is all about Unisa students making personal contact with the world of work for expert advice on finding their ideal careers. “Fairs are the single best way to meet a range of employers face-to-face. They give students the opportunity to ask questions and build relationships with their potential employers, thus giving them a head start in the competitive graduate and internship market,” she pointed out.

“The number of employers attending our career fairs year-on-year is a real testament to the employability of Unisa’s students and graduates,” said Makhanya. Exhibitors participating this year include the Auditor General SA, Fruit SA, Step 2, SANBI, Legal Aid SA, the South African Police Service and Forensics, SARS, Nkonki Inc. and a number of government departments.

And what did the students have to say?

Lerato Kekana is excited to be here because she came to gain knowledge. She sees this as an opportunity to engage with the different companies and organisations because most of the time when you go to the companies directly the employees don’t have time to answer questions and reject you.

Palesa Kekana is studying and is passionate about accounting so she came here to get a broader knowledge and information on accounting and the different opportunities offered as a career. She also wants to make sure she has made the right choice by studying accounting and if she’s on the right path.

Ronald Mtanga says it’s his first time attending the careers fair and he wants to develop his career. He’s interested to know more about learnerships, internships and job opportunities available.

Brian Ngoepe says by coming to the careers fair he is now aware of the many fields in policing. There is more to policing than the normal job we know the police do. He also visited Harambe, an organisation which, among other things, develops the youth and assists them in finding employment. They teach the youth how to write CVs and how to answer questions in interviews.

Nomsa Mavembela is studying Corrections Management. She came to the careers fair to find out when she completes her course whether her age will allow her to qualify to get a job in this field.

Nothando Zondo came here to learn more about her field of study, which is Agriculture. She wants broader information on the field.

*Compiled by Sharon Farrell and Boikanyo Moremedi