People go to varsity with the hope that they will get jobs immediately after school. To some that happens but to others it is a long wait to get a job. This is not a matter of which qualification you have obtained or the institution you come from. According to StatsSA there are 38,2 % of unemployed youth in South Africa.
When I graduated the only thing that was on my mind was to get a job. Little did I know that it was going to be filled with disappointments. What bothered me the most was the requirements on the job posts. There was also a time I broke down thinking about how I would get to a point of settling for a job I didn’t like just to make a living.
We spoke to a few young people who shared their journey with us.
Dimpho Temane is a 23 years old who matriculated in 2013. She took a gap year in 2014 while trying to figure out what she wanted to study. Her focus was on improving her poetry and attending sessions with friends.This is when she stumbled across journalism and decided to apply for it.
“I studied journalism for two years and graduated in 2017. I worked for a publication called PlusNewsSA but it was not a paying job. There a lot of volunteering jobs that I did because I wanted to gain experience”.
“It took me a year to get a job and it was tough when applying while being rejected.Nothing is as painful as an email saying that you are not good enough.Finances are very tight and at home I would think that my parents are regretful for allowing to do a journalism diploma. Funny enough it was all in my mind because they support me emotionally and financially as well.”
“It took me a year to get a job and it was tough when applying while being rejected. I am now working at a radio station,it doesn’t pay much but it is something that I am passionate about”.
She and her friends cannot seem to understand how the employment process works.
“It just doesn’t make sense that the requirements are having a car and probably 3 years of experience. We are fresh graduates and not all of us have cars hence we need jobs in order to buy the cars”.
Lesego Mudau, a 24-years-old, resides in Olievenhoutbosch and has been staying there for the past 2 years. He works at a retail outlet and is studying towards a diploma in banking part time. As a retail employee, this means he gets to receive stock and pack it on the shelves.
He tells us how he feels about his job and some of his future plans. “I honestly don’t like my job but at the end of the day it pays most of my bills”.
The young man has bigger plans for himself as he wants to graduate and get a second IT programming qualification as well. One of his wishes is to open a small internet cafe with friends.
The requirements of a job are some of the things he is concerned about once he gets done with his studies. As he mostly looks at job posts which are related to Banking he tends to wonder if he will even be able to secure a decent job.
“The frustrating part is that young people tend to give it their all and study while working part-time but never gets a job. I am paying for my own fees and it will break me if I don’t get one”.
The two young people are eager to work hard regardless of what they are going through.