- Created on Thursday, 04 October 2012 11:23
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A specialists risk finance company for formal small and medium enterprises (SMEs) has launched a graduate internship programme which aims to bridge the gap between academic study and workplace requirements to help in the fight against youth unemployment.
“As youth unemployment continues to grow in South Africa, it has become clear that the issue is no longer limited to unqualified youth, but many of the qualified graduates in South Africa too,” says Gerrie van Biljon, executive director of Business Partners Limited.
He says educational internship programmes that provide graduates with more opportunities for work experience are proven to be one of the best methods to combat unemployment. “The private sector needs to embrace and create industry-specific internship programmes in order to boost young individuals’ life chances and build the skills that drive economic growth.”
The programme offers young, recently qualified, graduates the possibility of gaining practical work experience and skills in the world of SME finance. “The initial programme comprises of two six-month modules, and if the graduates meet the performance standards after the first year they may apply to continue for a second year. Those accepted will receive a certificate of due diligence competency and if students complete the second year they will receive an official certificate.”
Van Biljon says internship programmes help with regard to the skills shortages the business sector faces.
“Internships can help businesses across all industries by offering a method to harness fresh talent. Correctly trained staff are able to perform a wider range of tasks and take on new responsibilities. This can help to reduce skill shortages, minimise staff turnover and workplace accidents, as well as increase productivity.” Van Biljon says that the objective of the Business Partners Limited Graduate Internship Programme is to educate and prepare graduates for the entrepreneurship industry and in particular SME finance. “The programme will educate individuals on the specific challenges issues facing SMEs and SME financiers so that they understand the market.”
All recently qualified graduates who hold a business-related degree with sound academic results are encouraged to apply for the programme.
Applications can be submitted via the careers page of the Business Partners Limited website until the end of November.
By a Tna reporter.