Why WIL is important to government

False Bay TVET College has aligned itself with various industry partners, SETAs and other role-players to provide our graduates with the necessary Work Integrated Learning and enhance their prospects of future employment.

One of the critical areas of focus for the Department of Higher Education and Training for the next five years will be to “…expand the availability of opportunities for workplace training for students in colleges and universities and to expand forms of workplace training such as learnerships and apprenticeships” (DHET Strategic Plan for Fiscal Years 2015/16 – 2019/20).

WIL is specifically contextualised and its centrality confirmed in the White Paper for Post-School Education and Training 2013, the National Development Plan, National Skills Development Strategy 3 and the National Skills Accord: “The aim of the government is to improve the amount and quality of workplace training in South Africa… Workplace training and work integrated learning (WIL) must be a central part of our training system…Work integrated learning (WIL) should be a central component of the college programmes” (Policy statement in the 2014 White Paper for Higher Education and Training).

These policies mandate delivery and strategic priorities in the TVET college sector and advocate cohesion between TVET colleges and industry to provide work integrated learning opportunities.

Why WIL matters to business
There are potentially significant rewards for businesses that take a strategic approach toward recruiting and developing young talent including “younger workers [that] represent an asset to firms in their capacities as consumers, influencers, innovators, and tech-savvy employees” (ManpowerGroup, 2012, p12).
Specific rewards for businesses working with the WIL programmes of colleges may include:
productive and cost-effective hire for the duration of WIL;
avenue for an enhanced screening process for potential employees;
reduced recruitment and induction costs ( tax breaks and BBBEE scorecard points);
development of a culture of learning within the organisation;
opportunity to influence college curricula and be influenced by it (especially in terms of new ideas, systems, processes and technology).

WIL at False Bay TVET College
The work integrated learning unit at False Bay TVET College comprises the Job Placement Department located at Westlake Campus. The unit has three functions:
Placement Support
Lecturer Workplace Exposure (LWE)
Workplace-Based Experience (WBE).

Placement Support
The core function of the Job Placement Department is to place successful learners in industry upon exit, i.e. on completion of National Certificate (Vocational) Level 4, National Accredited Technical Education Diploma (Nated), National Certificate, learnerships, engineering apprenticeships and some occupational programmes. Support is provided by the Job Placement Department through:
an orientation programme preparing students for the world of work;
providing work readiness workshops;
assisting with interview and CV writing skills;
identifying host employers and building relationships with them;
monitoring and evaluation of learners during placements through visits, phone calls or emails;
tracking of learners and receiving feedback from learners and host employers.

Lecturer Workplace Exposure
Lecturer Workplace Exposure (LWE) is workplace exposure through visits/placement in and/or training in the workplace. Lecturers are at False Bay TVET College are required to obtain a minimum of five days non-consecutive workplace-based experience.
This experience develops lecturers’ capacity and fosters good relations between the College and industry.

Workplace-Based Experience
The workplace-based experience (WBE) programme is undertaken by the various academic departments with the Job Placement Department acting in a supporting role. DHET has placed great emphasis on the practical component that needs to be covered within the NC(V) programme specifically and WBE meets this need.

NC(V) Level 3/4 and N4/5 learners are placed in industry for a period of five days, usually during their holiday period. Learners are briefed by their respective Programme Heads before going out into the industry and sourcing their own placement opportunities. Learners are issued a WBE Task Book to record various activities to be completed in the workplace. This task book forms part of the learners’ continuous assessments and will be marked by the lecturer upon returning to the College.