Municipality Empowers Pupils Through Job Shadow Opportunities
The Municipal Council of Manzini has empowered a total of 14 pupils from five Manzini-based schools through offering job shadow opportunities during the ongoing school holidays. Job shadowing allows people to follow closely and observe an employee performing their role. It helps empower young people get a glimpse of the world of work and gain first-hand insight into their preferred professions. This helps them either confirm or reconsider their career paths. The annual job shadowing programme forms part of the Municipality’s partnership with Junior Achievement Eswatini. The Form 4 pupils, who got a weeklong, exposure to the Municipality, are from Mjingo High School, Pro-Learning Academy, Hillside High School, Harolds Academy and St Theresa’s High School. The following is what the pupils said during the closing ceremony which was held last Friday at the Council Chamber;
- Radnah Masinga – Mjingo High School
“I was attached to the road maintenance section; which is all about civil engineering. Before joining the job shadow programme I had a desire to take up a career in road construction. My passion has been confirmed through my attachment to the Municipality. I enjoyed the feeling after having been involved in maintaining a road stretch and thereafter seeing motorists excited about driving on a well maintained road. My plea to the Municipality is that it provides those who work on the roads with incentives such as a free lunch meal every Fridays. They break a lot of sweat whilst executing their responsibility”.
- Wandiseka Dlamini – St Theresa’s High School
“I am so grateful to have spent some time with the Municipal Council of Manzini as it helped me open my mind and my heart for my passion. The rate of Gender-Based Violence (GBV) in the country is alarming. I learnt that sexual harassment in the workplace is seriously not tolerated in the Municipality. Same with sexual favouritism. Most of all, I learnt that passion for the job results in exceptional performance”.
- Nkosinathi Marshel – Pro-Learning High School
“I learnt that there is what is known as a disciplinary committee in the workplace. It is used when an employee has committed an offence; which is why it is important for one to guard their behavior in the workplace. I also learnt how to professionally conduct meetings. I actually learnt a lot and I believe that God is going to bless this Municipality in a big way. The culture is good. There are lunch hour services as well”.
- Mlondi Dlamini – Pro-Learning High School
“I first attached in the Stores section where I learnt a lot about inventory and the importance of stock control. Same with fuel expenditure control. I like the fact that one of the Municipality’s values is innovation. I would like to contribute towards a Manzini City that will have electric cars and robotics in future. All is possible as long as we commit to it. I sincerely appreciate the Municipal Council of Manzini for extending this opportunity to us as pupils. We learnt a lot”.
- Thembalethu Kunene – St Theresa’s High School
“I was attached to the mechanical workshop where I learnt the skills set that is required in the field of mechanical engineering. I also learnt that one needs to have the ability to work under pressure if they are to survive in this profession. I was also attached to the Electrical section; which deals with issues of city lighting and traffic lights. I learnt a lot”.
- Thandolwethu Mamba – Hillside High School
“I was attached to the Municipality’s health inspectorate. I joined the health inspectors as they went about their duties. This included conducting health and hygiene inspections in shops as well as conducting food grading. I was also attached to the recently accredited Municipal laboratory, where I learnt how micro-biology tests are conducted. Now I even know how to produce a hand-sanitiser. It’s a pity Covid-19 seems to be over. I would have made some money. May I thank the Municipality for this invaluable exposure”.
- Lindokuhle Matsenjwa – Harolds Academy
“I learnt that passion is key in the work environment. Without passion you cannot get anywhere. I was attached to the Finance Department and learnt about the rates billing process, the many rates payment options as well as the scary consequence of not paying rates. I also learnt about property valuation as well as the Geographic Information System (GIS). Before joining the job shadow programme I aspired to be an accountant but, following the exposure at the Municipality, I have since changed my mind and instead want to pursue studies in business administration”.
- Fisokuhle Mashaba – Harolds Academy
“I was attached to the LaMvelase Clinic; which largely specializes in HIV and AIDS prevention, counselling, testing and treatment. I was surprised by the large number of patients that get help from the clinic. What I like the most is that patients are treated with the utmost care. I would like to thank the Municipality for exposing me to the work environment”.
- Sphiwokuhle Mkhatshwa – Mjingo High School
“I learnt that to achieve greatness, one has to be passionate about their job. I also learnt that rates form the bulk of the Municipality’s revenue. Therefore, if people do not pay, the city suffers in terms of service such as patching of potholes. The rates also pay for the Municipality’s overheads such as electricity; which keeps the lights on at night, water; which makes it possible to utilize public toilets and fuel; which makes it possible for the Municipality to provide service utilising the many different machinery. I also learnt that other revenue sources such as street vending fees add to the overall income. I also learnt that some ratepayers and vendors struggle to pay. I suggest that the Municipality engages a business consultant to assist businesses that struggle with payment”.
- Zwelonke Gina – Pro-Learning High School
“I would like to be a judge. I was taken through the pieces of legislation that the Municipality utilizes. In all of this, my major take home was the importance of passion for the job. I thank the Municipality and Junior Achievement for the job shadow opportunity”.
- Yoliswa Hleta – St Theresa’s High School
“I was attached to the Filter Clinic, which is located within the civic offices and is open to members of the public. I also attached at the LaMvelase Clinic wherein I learnt, amongst others how laboratory tests for CD4 count are conducted. My chosen career path has been confirmed. Now I will work harder at school so that I realize my career dream”.
- Andiswa Ngwenya – Mjingo High School
“I was attached to the payroll section. I was surprised to learn that certain monies are deducted from employees’ salaries. I also learnt that in accounting one has to have certain soft skills such as integrity and honesty because you deal with money. In fact, I think it is well and good that CCTV cameras be installed in the Finance Department”.
- Mthulisi Shabangu – Pro-Learning High School
“I learnt a lot, including something called creditors, inventory and many other new words. I also learnt about what rates are used for and why it is important that every ratepayer pays. I also learnt of the importance of an organization knowing their customers. I also learnt a lot about the ISO 9001:2015 Quality Management System since the Municipality is certified”.
- Sibonginkosi Masina – Hillside High School
“I am an aspiring IT Technician hence I was attached to the IT section of the Municipality. I learnt a lot about IT systems, the server and payroll systems. I also learnt about taxation and pension funds. I also learnt how to avoid hacking. I also learnt about website development. I am truly grateful for this exposure. I’m no longer the same in terms of my perspective of things in the workplace”.
…THANK YOU MANZINI FOR TAKING SUCH A BIG NUMBER – JA
Junior Achievement Eswatini Executive Director Phetsile Masilela has extended her profound appreciation to the Municipality for opening its doors to the job shadowing programme. She said this during the closing ceremony of a 5-day job shadowing programme which saw 14 pupils from different Manzini-based schools participating. Masilela said it was not common for one organization to enroll such a high number of pupils all at once. The executive director added that through participating in this programme, the Municipality had invested into the future of young people.
“I am also happy to note that some female pupils are intent on pursuing male dominated fields; such as civil engineering. I was equally elated to hear one of the male pupils saying he would like to pursue a career in fashion design. That is what we want to see happening”, she stated.
Meanwhile, Manzini Municipality acting Chief Executive Officer Sizwe Dlamini thanked parents and schools for allowing the pupils to participate in the job shadowing programme.
“As a Municipality we hope this exposure will help the pupils map their career paths. I am also happy that some of you are already talking entrepreneurship at this age. That is good because most of the present jobs are disappearing. Aspire to be a job creator as opposed to being an employee. Also be good citizens. Good citizenship begins at the family level”, Dlamini said.