All his academic life, Pule Nkaenkae had been a great student. He sailed through the first eleven years of his schooling and when he got the chance to do a diploma he succeeded in graduating with several distinctions. All in all, Pule should have been on top of the world. But after graduating it all came to a standstill. He just couldn’t get a job. His diploma in Road Transport Management was good, but ultimately, the job market was just too saturated to find a place for him. Pule was never one to sit on his haunches however. He still had a small but steady job as a sales assistant that he had worked steadily at for six years since a year after matric, and though it wasn’t enough to achieve his goals, he worked hard at it whilst he looked for something better. At the end of 2013, he heard about Sparrow FET College from a youth development programme he attended. Sparrow was one of the recommended schools for youth in his position or even worse, and Pule immediately took the chance and signed up for the welding programme. He was not hesitant about going back to school all over again.
“I love learning,” he says with passion. “Learning the theory of welding was very simple for me as I enjoy studying greatly. From the word go, what I liked about Sparrow FET College was the fact that you could feel the personal vested interest in your education from the college. You had a relationship with them. I was not just a face at a university, I was Pule who was doing Welding and they knew every facet of my learning. If I struggled, they would immediately see and help me.”
At first Pule struggled at the college. In those days, the welding programme was new and there were no stipends for students so Pule struggled with transport money. But he grit his teeth and persevered. Attending Sparrow also opened Pule’s eyes to opportunities the youth today ignored. “Young people today, they all want to rush to university, but that is not where the jobs are.” He says ruefully. “They should research what is in demand.”
By July of 2014, Pule was doing his placement at New Heights Tank Design as a trainee. After he finished his training, the company took him in. Here began another rollercoaster. Pule had a great work ethic and all the managers were greatly impressed by him. He was snapped up into another department as soon as he was made a permanent employee, and got the opportunity to travel out of the country for large projects. And as of this year, when the company split and a new one was formed, Pule was the in demand employee everyone wanted to hire.
“I am a very motivated person, and with the training I got at Sparrow, I finally got a chance to apply and be rewarded for my motivation. What I always like to say is don’t start something you can’t finish. It is a waste of time and energy. It’s very difficult to overcome financial struggles, they interfere with everything, but as soon as you begin something you need to work to finish it. Be determined, be motivated, finish the task.”
Pule has plenty more tasks he is set to achieve, travel, furthering his new career and more. But with his determination and motivation, he is sure to achieve his dreams.
For more info: go to www.sparrowschools.co.za, call us on 011 673 4419 or email us on firstname.lastname@example.org