http://www.engineeringnews.co.za
  SEARCH
Login
R/€ = 14.18Change: 0.04
R/$ = 11.27Change: -0.05
Au 1205.59 $/ozChange: -12.38
Pt 1301.50 $/ozChange: -7.50
 
 
Note: Search is limited to the most recent 250 articles. Set date range to access earlier articles.
Where? With... When?








Start
 
End
 
 
And must exclude these words...
Close Main Search
Close Main Login
My Profile News Alerts Newsletters Logout Close Main Profile
 
Agriculture   Automotive   Chemicals   Competition Policy   Construction   Defence   Economy   Electricity   Energy   Environment   ICT   Metals   Mining   Science and Technology   Services   Trade   Transport & Logistics   Water  
What's On Press Office Tenders Suppliers Directory Research Jobs Announcements Contact Us
 
 
 
RSS Feed
Article   Comments   Other News   Research   Magazine  
 
 
Oct 16, 2012

Funding model for engineering faculties to be reviewed

Back
Construction|Engineering|Expertise|Africa|Ecsa|Education|Projects|Resources|System|Systems|Africa|Australia|Chile|South Africa|United Kingdom|Manufacturing|Manufacturing Industry|Products|Systems|Allyson Lawless|Blade Nzimande|Ecsa|Engela Van Staden|Gwebinkundla Qonde|Infrastructure|Jacob Zuma|Oswald Franks
Construction|Engineering|Expertise|Africa|Ecsa|Education|Projects|Resources|System|Systems|Africa||Manufacturing|Products|Systems|Ecsa|Infrastructure|
construction|engineering|expertise|africa-company|ecsa-company|education-company|projects|resources|system|systems-company|africa|australia-country|chile|south-africa|united-kingdom|manufacturing|manufacturing-industry|products|systems|allyson-lawless|blade-nzimande|ecsa|engela-van-staden|gwebinkundla-qonde|infrastructure|jacob-zuma|oswald-franks
© Reuse this



The Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) was heeding the call to reconsider the funding model pertaining to engineering faculties, which were underfunded and largely supported by cross-subsidisation by other faculties, DHET director for higher education academic planning, Dr Engela van Staden, said on Tuesday.

She was speaking on behalf of Higher Education and Training Minister Blade Nzimande at the 2012 Engineering Skills Summit, in Kempton Park.

For the 2012/13 to 2014/15 infrastructure and efficiency cycle, the total funding requested by universities for engineering faculties amounted to R1.3-billion. The DHET could only provide R510-million, while universities contributed R186-million, leaving a funding gap of over R600-million.

For the 2011/ 2012 cycle, R349-million was requested, while the DHET had R316-million available.

Van Staden said there was a need for proper support mechanisms and clear systemic changes to increase the required numbers and types of engineers, engineering technologists, technicians and technical assistants in South Africa.

She added that South Africa’s basic education and school system, particularly the availability of matriculants with the appropriate level of achievement and subject choices to study engineering sciences, would have to be considered.

The enrolment planning process for 2011/12 to 2013/14 set the target of increasing the number of engineering graduates to 15 000 by 2014.

A proposal submitted to the Minister’s office from eight universities offering engineering programmes suggested that the expertise at existing, well-functioning engineering faculties be used to increase engineering graduate numbers.

The proposal outlined a projected human resources budget of R2.6-billion from 2012 to 2020 for the eight universities, of which engineering science bursaries would account for R900-million.

“We now have the opportunity to revisit our approach towards determining the realistic expansion of engineering graduates needed in specific specialisation areas,” Van Staden said.

South Africa lagged far behind in the number of engineers proportionate to population, compared with the UK, Australia and Chile, having one engineer per 3 100 persons in the population.

Engineering Council of South Africa (ECSA) CEO Dr Oswald Franks said it was crucial to determine the supply and demand for engineers in the specific disciplines, especially in light of President Jacob Zuma’s announcement of the R845-billion in infrastructure projects aimed at driving economic growth and development.

“The engineering skills shortage does not pertain to all the spheres of engineering and is not specific to engineering disciplines. It is not currently felt in the construction sector, but in the manufacturing industry it has become quite apparent,” he noted.

Franks added that South Africa was paying for its engineering skills deficit through its loss of global competitiveness.

"Our industries are not deliverying products, we are not developing new technologies."

ECSA council member Dr Allyson Lawless, who warned that a latent skills shortage could creep in as companies and departments get used to not having required skills, also said inefficiency in the higher education system had to be resolved, as the enrolment rate at universities was significantly higher than the rate of graduation.

In 2010, about 14 500 engineering students enrolled, but only about 2 000 graduated. At universities of technology, over 40 000 students enrolled in 2010, but less than 5 000 graduated.

Lawless raised concern about deficiencies in South Africa’s maths, science and languages education, as well students’ readiness for higher education study and independent learning.

At higher education level, she said lines of race and educational disadvantage were dictating differential throughput rates. “Improving throughputs, especially for black students, is key to increasing graduate outputs, especially given the slow pace of school reform.”

Lawless said developing skills and filling posts would require, a short-, medium- and long-term approach.

In the short term (2012 to 2014), the aim must be to harness the private sector, retired engineers and overseas capacity to get government’s major infrastructure projects off the ground, and set training conditions to all projects to ensure current graduates were adequately trained.

In the medium term (2012 to 2017), the technical structures and systems required in the public sector organisations must be redeveloped and populated with available skills.

In the long term (2012 to 2022), the country would have to start training towards fully populating the structures designed in the medium term. This would require the issuing of bursaries and major training programmes in all public sectors structures, workplace training, mentoring and coaching.

ECSA president Gwebinkundla Qonde highlighted the importance of the one-day skills summit in solving the country’s engineering skills shortage.

“Engineering and technical education is the key to the development of any nation. Infrastructure development is the foundation for eradicating poverty and inequality. It is a catalyst for meaningful direct foreign investment.

Edited by: Mariaan Webb
© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Latest News
Updated 1 hour 9 minutes ago Low-cost African airline fastjet, during the six months ended June 30, experienced a steady increase of 41.5% in the number of passengers travelling on core Tanzanian routes, with Tanzania first-half revenue growing by 96% to $19-million compared with the same period...
Updated 2 hours 5 minutes ago As part of new listing requirements implemented by the JSE on Tuesday, companies listed on select international bourses will now be able to fast-track their secondary listings on the JSE. The local bourse announced to the market in August that it had made global...
Updated 2 hours 5 minutes ago Mauritius has been ranked first in the Ibrahim Index of African Governance (IIAG) 2014 for the eighth consecutive year, while South Africa ranked fourth overall and third in the region. Among the 52 countries rated by the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, Mauritius scored the...
More
 
 
Recent Research Reports
Road and Rail 2014: A review of South Africa's road and rail infrastructure (PDF report)
Creamer Media’s Road and Rail 2014 report examines South Africa’s road and rail transport system, with particular focus on the size and state of the country’s road and rail network, the funding and maintenance of these respective networks, and the push to move road...
Real Economy Year Book 2014 (PDF Report)
This edition drills down into the performance and outlook for a variety of sectors, including automotive, construction, electricity, transport, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum.
Real Economy Insight: Automotive 2014 (PDF Report)
This four-page brief covers key developments in the automotive industry over the past 12 months, including an overview of South Africa’s automotive market, trade figures, production and the policies influencing the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Construction 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the construction industry over the past 12 months. It provides an overview of the sector and includes details of employment in the sector, infrastructure and municipal spending, as well as insight into companies’...
Real Economy Insight: Electricity 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the electricity industry over the past 12 months, including details of State-owned power utility Eskom’s generation activities, funding and tariffs, independent power producers and prospects for the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Road and Rail 2014 (PDF Report)
This six-page brief covers key developments in the road and rail industries over the past 12 months, including details of South Africa’s road and rail network and prospects for both sectors.
 
 
 
 
 
This Week's Magazine
The South African new vehicle market is likely to reach around 630 000 units in 2014, down from the 650 000 units recorded in 2013, says Toyota South Africa Motors (TSAM) president and CEO Dr Johan van Zyl. Van Zyl is also president of the National Association of...
Efforts by the Kenya government to increase energy generation by 5 000 MW over the next three years received a major boost following the award of a $2-billion contract to build a coal power plant in Lamu.  Despite allegations of irregular tendering process, the...
Using crafty wordplay on a well-known Internet meme, brilliant South African-born US entrepreneur and businessperson Elon Musk announced that Tesla Motors would not initiate patent lawsuits against anyone who, in good faith, wanted to use its technology. Instead,...
August new vehicle sales declined by 1.4%, to 55 722 units, compared with the same month last year. Assisted by the car rental market, the South African new passenger car market, at 37 953 units, contracted by 1 047 units, or 2.7%, compared with August last year.
With South Africans facing the challenge of reducing electricity consumption, the biennial Eskom Energy Efficient Lighting Design Competition, to encourage the integration of energy efficient lighting in architectural, engineering and interior design, received a...
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Alert Close
Embed Code Close
content
Research Reports Close
Research Reports are a product of the
Research Channel Africa. Reports can be bought individually or you can gain full access to all reports as part of a Research Channel Africa subscription.
Find Out More Buy Report
 
 
Close
Engineering News
Completely Re-Engineered
Experience it now. Click here
*website to launch in a few weeks