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Volkswagen's Trainee programme addresses youth unemployment

Dr Lesley Lee Head Of The Vwsa Learning Academy With Corporate Trainee Nelisa Winti 1800x1800

According to statistics, of South Africa's five million unemployed people, 3.5million are under 35 - 175 000 of those are graduates.

It is in light of these alarming figures that Volkswagen Group South Africa (VWSA) continues with its Commercial Trainee programme which assists Nelson Mandela Bay students in gaining practical working experience.

The overarching aim of the Commercial Trainees programme is to assist students that have completed a non- technical qualification and are required to complete a practical component in order for them to gain their qualification.

"Through this programme we want college students to leave Volkswagen having gained valuable skills and knowledge which will assist in making them employable, not only at Volkswagen but in other industries as well," said VWSA Chairman and Managing Director Thomas Schaefer.

With more than six months employed, the 10 students joined Volkswagen at the beginning of the year and have been getting experience in departments like Communications Division, Finance, Human Resources, Logistics, Purchasing, Quality Assurance, Technical Academy, Information Services and Product Engineering.

The Commercial Trainee programme exposes students to the corporate world and Ndzondelelo High School matriculant and PE College student, Nelisa Winti shares her first-hand experience.   

"Coming from a township background proved difficult in the beginning but from the on-set I told myself I needed to adapt to this corporate environment," says Winti.

"Most of what I am learning at Volkswagen I hadn't learnt at school, things like editing and design, photography, digital communications, strategic communications and making powerful presentations,"

"This is a great platform to learn new skills, especially on how to conduct oneself professionally whilst also gaining experience for my CV," concluded Winti.

"At Volkswagen we are passionate about youth development and the Commercial Trainee programme along with other programmes like the Graduate Trainees, Further Education Training and Wanderjahre programmes, helps us grow and develop young people, not just from our Metro but from across the country as well," concluded Schaefer.

The Commercial Trainee programme is now in its 15th year at Volkswagen.