Regulars >> Skills and Recruitment
The Department of Science and Technology (DST) has earmarked R80 million for support programmes enabling young, unemployed graduates to gain work experience in science, engineering and technology institutions.

This is according to science and technology minister " rel=tag>Naledi Pandor, who was speaking at a media briefing highlighting the DST’s plans as she takes over from predecessor " rel=tag>Derek Hanekom. According to Pandor, current programmes have supported 700 graduates per year, with the department looking to increase the number to 1 000. “In addition, the DST will invest R400 million per annum to support postgraduate students.”

Pandor said the DST would partner with the basic and higher education departments in order to increase the number of students at postgraduate level, while further funding will aim to up the number of learners taking mathematics and science.

Responding to a question regarding the World Economic Forum report placing SA’s quality of mathematics and science education as worst among 148 countries, Pandor noted it was based mainly on perceptions, rather than testing of the learners.

Other priorities for the DST include the ongoing project, aligning its initiatives with efforts to grow the economy, and implementing the National Development Plan. Pandor returns to the helm of the DST following a recent stint leading the home affairs department.