Tourvest employs 14 learnership graduates

Twenty learners from remote rural corners of the country recently concluded the first part of a journey towards building a career.  At the end of March 2013, they received their NQF level 5 certificates, having successfully completed a national certificate in general travel and tourism.

Tourvest Travel Services (TTS) and Tourvest Destination Management (TDM), divisions of well-known tourism group Tourvest, hosted the candidates during their 12-month learnership period.  TTS is an accredited training provider with the Culture, Arts, Tourism, Hospitality and Sport Sector Education and Training Authority (CATHSSETA).

Fourteen of the learners are now working for the group: seven with TTS and seven with TDM.  Efforts are being made to help the other six candidates find work as well.

Tourvest has been running learnerships for more than 10 years, but this experience with rural learners was a first for the company. When we called the learners to tell them that they have been selected for our programme, some were out herding cattle, says TTS chief executive Morné du Preez. These young people all left behind everything that was familiar to them and ventured into the big city to make their dreams come true. Activities we regard as commonplace, such as using public transport, were new and strange to them.

192-Tourvest GraduationCharleen Shearer, head of human capital at TTS, adds that this was one of the hardest learnerships the group has ever implemented, but also one of the most successful and rewarding.These young people have surprised us in so many ways with their humbleness, knowledge and determination to learn and succeed.

The ground-breaking rural development learnership was launched in March 2012 in conjunction with the CATHSSETA.  The candidates 10 from Vhembe, eight from Dambhuza and two from eManyiseni in KwaZulu-Natal ˆ completed 10 theory modules while gaining workplace experience under the guidance of Tourvest mentors.

Tourvest’s commitment to skills development in South Africa is attested to by the fact that over the past decade, more than 200 learners have graduated from our learnerships with a national certificate in general travel and tourism,‰ elaborates du Preez.  Around 80% of them have been employed by the company, with several progressing into management and senior consultant positions. We see the value of investing in these programmes and are motivated to continue presenting them.  I am extremely proud of our first rural graduates and wish them all the best for the future.


The class of 2012:  Standing ˆ Bongumusa Palican Zulu, Rosemary Khaohelo Molepo, Richard Thabelo Munyai, Nompumelelo Fiona Majiya, Junior Sibusiso Ndlovu, Nsuku Ian Matshabi, Nhlanhla Mtembi, Maria Watkins (Tourvest), Riaan Momberg (Tourvest), Siphamandla Innocent Macinga, Dennis Mvelo Lunga Nkonyane, Msizi Christian Dlamini.  Crouching or sitting – Phelisile Iris Ngubane, Siyabonga Lindelani Khambule, Nsovo Raymond Chauke, Rolivhuwa Ramugumo, Andile Nxumalo, Takalani Christopher Nemalegeni, Fhulufhelo Magoro, Ntombifikile Pretty Shusha, Samkelisiwe Immaculate Dlamini And Kulani Lineth Chauke.

Author: Muzi Mohale

Hi there, am your host and I blog about the tourism industry in South Africa. You're also welcome to contribute your expert content on matters affecting the industry. You can reach me on muzi[at]

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