Student ready to put her artisan skills after qualifying as a fitter

Nsimbini was part of the Technical Skills Programme

Thapelo Nsimbini
Thapelo Nsimbini
Image: Supplied

Youth are making a living as artisans after being trained through a National Youth Development Agency (NYDA) and Services Sector Education and Training Authority skills development programme.

Thapelo Nsimbini, 26, from KaMhlushwa in Mpumalanga has qualified as a fitter through the Technical Skills Programme.

She trained in fitting and turning at the Technotrain Industrial Training Academy in Kempton Park on the East Rand.

Fitters and turners are highly skilled craftsmen who manufacture, construct, assemble and fit components for machinery.

The training, which included two-and-a-half years of theory and a six-month practical, enabled Nsimbini to develop skills she now uses to earn a living.

The training taught Nsimbini how to maintain and rebuild heavy duty machines, used for making and maintaining bolts, shafts and other heavy duty equipment.

“I learnt how to measure the inside of shafts, which helps to align the wheel of a car. I can also change the bearings of an industrial water and oil pump,” Nsimbini says.

She is now opening her own bearing manufacturing and refurbishing business. “Training as an artisan not only opens jobs, but can also enable one to be an entrepreneur,” she says.

To become an artisan you can enroll at a technical vocational education and training college or any registered private higher education institution that offers these courses.

To study towards a National Qualification Framework (NQF) Level 1 in boiler making, fitting or turning, you must have passed grade 9 with mathematics and physical science. The entry requirement for an N3 qualification is a grade 11 pass, with mathematics and physical science. 

During the course, students learn mathematics, engineering science, engineering drawing, fitting and machining and mechanotechnology from N1 to N3.

This article was first published in GCIS's Vukuzenzele

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