The unemployment rate in South Africa (SA) has reached levels that require urgent intervention from all training institutions responsible for developing employment skills and preparing students for industry. While the South African Government has launched initiatives such as the National Development Plan and the Skills Development Act to facilitate employment, Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) have Cooperative Education programs such as Work-Integrated Learning (WIL) to facilitate student placements within industry, to enhance and promote student exposure, and introduce them to academic programs within the career placement context. The SA government also initiated the National Skills Authority, Sectorial Education and Training Authorities, and the National Skills Fund to collaborate on partnerships with industry and HEIs. The initiatives of the SA Ministry of Higher Education include placement of students in industry. Universities have prioritized placement of students as a critical measure of their success. The realization of industry is to select individuals for placement based on practical experience, not just academic qualifications. Factors such as decolonization of WIL have become part of the academic landscape for HEIs and other training institutions that require more sensitivity when considering the operating environment for industry. HEIs would also benefit from career planning and job analysis in their cooperative education programs. The job-analysis phase should follow the career development phase, which is a core part of WIL that needs to diversify cooperative education policies. HEIs need to upgrade, modernize, and adapt curricula to SA conditions for industry.
Pop, C. and Brink, R. (2017), "Repositioning Work-Integrated Learning in Diverse Communities", Work-Integrated Learning in the 21st Century (International Perspectives on Education and Society, Vol. 32), Emerald Publishing Limited, pp. 115-128. https://doi.org/10.1108/S1479-367920170000032007Download as .RIS
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