By Matheus Hamutenya
KEETMANSHOOP – Companies are reluctant to take in Namibian Institute of Mining and Technology (NIMT) trainees for practical job experience, making it difficult for apprentices to complete their studies with the desired knowledge.
The principal of the NIMT branch in Keetmanshoop, Eugene Bingham, has called on companies to get on board and open doors to students to shape their skills in the different trades they specialised in.
He explained that although trainees need to be trained theoretically as well as practically for them to be good end-products and ready for the job market when they leave the institution, companies are unwilling to grant them a chance to do their practicals.
“Due to the economic climate that we are in and other factors, companies are taking less and less trainees,” he said joylessly.
Bingham acknowledged that despite the fact that the industry is small and cannot accommodate all trainees, there are companies that are giving it their best shot to help trainees get job attachment placements but the majority are less helpful.
He fumed at how the institution’s hard attempts to get places for the Level One trainees are often in vain as companies are circumspect at taking them due to their lack of knowledge.
“Placing Level One trainees is a big problem because people say they know nothing, but we must all start somewhere,” he accentuated.
With the current trainees mostly from northern parts of Namibia, according to Bingham, he urged southern youth to wake up and grab opportunities to study at institutions, which are at their doorsteps.
He explained that most trainees are government funded but the funds do not cater for accommodation and youth from nearby places should take school seriously and get into the system, as they will not have headaches over accommodation.
The institution has about 282 trainees in five different trades at the moment, with the next intake due in March.