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Most learners aren’t sure how they want to earn a living, but if you get to know yourself and research different career paths that interest you; you could find yourself being paid to do something that you really like.

Planning your career is much like planning a journey with several stopping-off points along the way. You need to decide on your destination (career choice), what to pack in your suitcase (skills, qualifications, etc) and what route to take. Your career route is unlikely to be a straight line between where you are now and where you want to be in the future. Unexpected things do happen so you may have to change your plans before reaching your job destination. There is also the possibility that if you have not done enough initial planning, when you reach your destination, it may not be what you expected it to be. So, START THINKING AHEAD IN GRADE 11 (eleven).

Southern Africa has a number of traditional universities and universities of technology that offer diplomas and degrees on topics related to the minerals industry. As a technically qualified person your academic qualification is obtained after a 4-year full-time courses at a university or a university of technology (previous Technikon). This will give you the B.Sc. (Eng.), BSc(Hons) or a B Tech or a diploma in the relevant discipline. Once you have completed your undergraduate studies, you may also have the opportunity to continue study towards a post graduate degree, namely a masters degree followed by a PhD.

The entrance requirements for the different institutions can be studied at their respective web pages. You should apply to the tertiary institution/s of your choice as early as possible in the year for most institutions have a cut-off date for applications. The following link lists the web addresses of the institutions.

Central University of Technology
Durban Institute of Technology Nelson Mandela Metro University
North West University Rhodes University
Stellenbosch University Tshwane University of Technology
University of Cape Town University of Fort Hare
University of Johannesburg University of KwaZulu-Natal
University of Limpopo University of Pretoria
University of South Africa University of the Free State
University of the Western Cape University of the Witwatersrand
University of Venda Vaal University of Technology
Walter Sisulu University

The minerals industry offer rewarding opportunities for those individuals that have a passion for the field. It is therefore important that you perform thorough research in the field of interest. Contact a member of your family or friend that is in the field and discuss the different aspects of the discipline. Another option is to participate in the June break programs offered by some tertiary institutions for grade 11 and 12 learners. The program may include a visit to the departments on its campus as well as site visits to industrial plants. Contact the institution in your region for more information. Another option is to ask your guidance teacher to organise a visit to a mining operation in your area. The company may be able to assist in this regard.

Scholarship Trust Fund

The Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy established a Scholarship Trust Fund for students in Mining and Metallurgy at South African tertiary educational Institutions in 2003. The fund holds some reserves for future years in order to smooth the flow of monies to the Institutions. Considerable funding has come from the SAIMM itself as it has contributed R220 000 each year; but significant funds have also been donated by individuals in the minerals and metals industry or by the smaller companies operating in the industry.

Useful Links

mineral resources