Giving hope where there was none

Giving hope where there was none

2018 graduates for the French South African Schneider Electric Education Centre (F’SASEC)

Selina Rapulane

The Vaal University of Technology (VUT), in partnership with French South African Schneider Electric Education Centre (F’SASEC), held the class of 2018 “Ubuntu Class” graduation ceremony at VUT Southern Gauteng Science and Technology Park on 5 December.

Programme director for the day was Mr Moeketsi Montshitsi: Public Relations Coordinator.

“This morning we are all excited over one thing, to see what F’SASEC has done for our students who are here with us. Dear parents, I know your feelings and understand how excited you are to see one of your own little ones becoming an adult as from today, because they will be getting certificates which should take them steps further in their lives,” said Prof Maurice Ndege: Executive Dean of the Faculty of Engineering. He also gave a brief background on the start of the programme, which is to assist those who cannot afford tertiary education. French Schneider was concerned about this and so agreed to address the situation.

“From today on, these young ladies and gentlemen should be able to get employment or start their own businesses, to be able to put bread on the table. I welcome everybody who is here for this graduation ceremony and we look forward to the rest of the programme,” he said.

Ms Zanelle Dalglish: Head of Sustainable Development and Academy at Anglophone Africa Cluster of Schneider Electric spoke next, saying: “Wow what a privilege it is to be here once again for another year as we receive these beautiful students graduating. As the French South African Schneider Electric Education Centre, I believe we will become a household word once again in South Africa. I think as we progress in the different years where we are graduating students, our programme is becoming more and more visible in the country and most of all, as Prof Ndege has said, it’s changing the lives of those people who previously didn’t have hope,” she said.

She gave a big welcome to the parents and families who were present and said she knew that there was a lot of sacrifice and support required from them to ensure that the students could sit there today, looking beautiful in their gowns.

She explained the background of F’SASEC so that the families of the students could better understand what their children are a part of.

Certificates were handed to each one of the 14 students by Mr Riaan Greeff: F’SASEC Coordinator, while Mr Hendrik van der Merwe: Operations Manager at VUT SGSTP acknowledged the presence of everyone who attended and also thanked the students for keeping their promise and getting to the finish line.

Dr Joseph Molete: Executive Director at VUT SGSTP said: “I also want to extend my congratulations to all the students and acknowledge our partners and welcome the family members.” He then gave a motivational speech on “finding the sweet spot” where he talked about good ideas and leadership being at the core of success.

Mr James Mogale: Acting Director for Curriculum Development and Support at TVET Colleges, was among the delegates and very impressed with the programme, as he said he was previously not fully aware of what the centre offered.

The day culminated in ululations of joy and snapping of photographs as students and their families sought to capture this special day.

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