Productivity SA appointed to manage internship progamme for unemployed graduates

Private sector companies have been invited by Productivity SA to serve as hosts for interns.

Productivity SA, the government entity mandated to promote employment growth and productivity in South Africa, has been appointed to manage the Itukise Internship for Unemployed Graduates Programme, which will cater for 1,200 unemployed graduates, in-service and professional trainees for up to three years. The programme aims to provide relevant work experience to unemployed graduates, in-service trainees as well as candidate trainees, between the ages of 18 and 35 years, who are working towards their professional qualification

Productivity SA CEO, Mothunye Mothiba, has called on private sector companies to serve as hosts for the interns, saying that the programme would help improve the employability of young graduates by providing them with practical skills and real-life exposure to the workplace and also help them to build networks for future employment.

“We are proud to play a role that forms part of the government's strategy to tackle high unemployment levels in South Africa by equipping youth with the necessary skills to prepare them for the workplace,” he said in a press statement. 

Itukise, a Sesotho word that means "prepare yourself", is an Internship programme, conceptualised by the Skills for the Economy unit of the Special Economic Zones and Economic Transformation Division and funded by the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition. 

Graduates who are eligible to apply for the programme are placed in three categories.

The first category that is eligible to apply is Professional trainee candidates, who have completed a National Diploma or Degree in any of the Industrial, Electro-Mechanic, Mechanical, Electrical and Civil Engineering fields, who are unemployed and have not been in an internship programme aligned to the discipline.

The second category that is eligible to apply is young graduates who have completed a recognised qualification of NQF Level 6 (National Diploma or Degree) from any institution of higher learning. Such graduates should be unemployed and not have been in employment nor an internship in their field of study.

The third category that is eligible to apply, is young unemployed students from the Technical and Vocational Education Training Colleges and Universities of Technology, who need practical training for a duration of up to18 months to fulfil their qualification requirements. These trainees will be placed in host enterprises for their in-service training where they will be expected to complete their training log books and attendance.