Zimile Consulting Engineers tackles youth unemployment head-on

August 2022 – Zimile Consulting Engineers, in partnership with the Mpileng Group, have entered a strategic partnership and contracted eight learners to participate in their first learnership programme. 

The programme aims to empower the youth as they enter the work environment by providing practical work experience and valuable skills. There are various learnerships, including engineering and business administration, running for 12 months, with the potential to permanently employ at least one learner from the programme.

Shawn Gama, CEO of Zimile Consulting Engineers, encourages businesses, that have the capacity to do so, to employ more young people. “Young people are eager to learn; they put much effort into their work. The hurdle they face after completing their formal and higher education is the experience gap”. 

Gama calls for more businesses to employ the youth to enable them to close the gap in practical work experience that they urgently need. Statistics South Africa indicates that in the first quarter of 2022, unemployment for young graduates aged between 15-24 declined from 40.3% to 32.6%, and for those aged between 25-34, it increased by 6.9 % to 22.4%.

Gama advocates that both the private sector and government have a responsibility to address youth unemployment. “As a business, we want to contribute to society by empowering the youth; and we believe that the private sector needs to assist the government in creating opportunities for the youth to start participating in the economy.”

Youth empowerment lies close to the heart of Zimile Consulting Engineers, which has an ever-growing team largely comprising youth, with most people being 35 or younger. The learnership programme was a natural complement to the company’s growth strategy. 

Gama explains that the company required a partner to develop new ideas and solutions to help it contribute to society. 

“Mpileng was the perfect partner with whom we collaborate with and add value to this learnership programme. Mpileng enhances the programme by providing necessary work skills training as well, such as training in business administration. 

This means when learners come to our facilities, they already have some basic experience, which makes their transition into the professional work environment easier and helps them to deal with the requirements of the real working world with further guidance and training from our team at Zimile. It is important to use the Sector Education and Training Authority’s resources to provide a platform to expose young professionals to relevant disciplines.” 

Gama is confident that through this programme the eight young professionals will gain the necessary work experience and grow to perhaps make management decisions eventually. “We are optimistic that this programme will continue successfully year after year,” Gama concluded.

About Zimile Consulting Engineers

Zimile Consulting Engineers is a 100% black-owned, multi-disciplinary consulting engineering, project, and construction management firm. By embracing the dynamism that is in the built environment through technological advancement, the firm seeks to offer value adding and innovative engineering solutions.