TVET Colleges Becoming A More Attractive Option For Students


The higher education department wants more than 2 million students enrolled in programmes at Technical and Vocational Education and Training colleges by 2023. With more than 300 campuses around the country, a wide range of programmes and promising job opportunities, the department believes their enrollment target is possible.




The popularity of Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) colleges has grown, seeing enrolment figures increase substantially over the past decade. In 2010, around 200,000 students were enrolled in programmes at colleges. This has grown to more than 550,000 enrollments in 2023. 

The Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) says TVET colleges allow students to gain theoretical knowledge and practical skills needed by the country. 

DHET Deputy Minister Buti Manamela wants young people to be encouraged to consider furthering their education at a TVET college. They believe that the accessibility of colleges, a wide range of artisanal programmes and employment opportunities make TVET colleges an attractive proposition for students. 

The deputy minister argued that TVET college graduates have an advantage over other students as they can find employment sooner due to their work experience and industry exposure. They add that many students often receive employment opportunities while they are still studying.  

Manamela says the DHET has set a target of producing 30,000 artisans annually by 2030. While their progress in achieving this was impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic, Manamela is confident this goal will be achieved. 

TVETs have a better advantage than any of the other sectors in our education system to almost immediately get their graduates employment. 

The deputy minister says young people must be encouraged to consider TVET colleges as an option once they complete their schooling. However, the minister acknowledges TVET colleges are not viewed with the same prestige as universities. 

Students who completed Grade 9 can enrol in a TVET college to complete a matric equivalent qualification known as the National Certificate Vocational (NCV). 

TVET colleges offer various occupational programmes offered at their 300 college campuses around the country. These artisanal programmes equip students with practical skills they can use to secure employment or pursue entrepreneurial opportunities.

The DHET will spend R14.428 billion in the TVET college sector in 2023. The department will also fund TVET college students through the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS). 

NSFAS funds TVET college students who meet their bursary eligibility criteria. Funded students receive comprehensive funding for fees and other living expenses.


Suggested Article:

TVET College Students during a lecture session

TVET colleges provide students with practical skills and theoretical knowledge in various fields. However, the high dropout rate in TVET colleges has been a major concern for the Department of Higher Education and Training.




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