Hello Tomorrow! #HireAGrad in taking off!

#HireAGrad is a scarce skills development initiative for unemployed graduates aimed at changing the futures of downtrodden and demoralised unemployed South African graduates, for the better. We are developing scarce skills targeting immediate industry requirements, within the unemployed graduate market in South Africa.

#HireAGrad is a scarce skills development initiative for unemployed graduates aimed at changing the futures of downtrodden and demoralised unemployed South African graduates, for the better.

Invest in our Youth, Invest in our Future

“Coming from a rural village where not many people attend university, let alone graduate, Madonsela said it was tough going back home with nothing to show for his time away” (Mngoma: 2016)

There is much debate around the concept of graduate unemployment in South Africa for many years now.

On a positive note, Statistics South Africa recently announced a spike in the number of graduates, who have completed their tertiary education over the past twenty years, coming from previously disadvantaged backgrounds.

Stats SA also confirms that the current batch of youth are the most educated in South African history.

Furthermore, a research report compiled by Stellenbosch Economics professor and Van Broekhuizen found that graduate unemployment in South Africa compares favourably with developed countries, at less than 6%!

These statistics should be an indication that South Africa is making serious progress in developing the economy, communities and individuals. Via upliftment of the youth, particularly those from vulnerable backgrounds who desperately pin their hopes and aspirations on escaping the confines poverty, achievement of their degrees should indicate a move towards an era of economic transformation.

Yet, the current status quo speaks volumes otherwise.

This utopian sentiment does not resonate with the thousands of unemployed graduates who find themselves on street corners, handing out their resumes with hopes of securing employment. Then, only to return to their hometowns ashamed, disappointed and disheartened.

The excitement of graduation is short-lived. The expense of student debt, eternally debilitating.

Instead, statistics from the Institute of Race Relations’ 2016 South Africa Survey depicts a very gloomy picture. Accordingly, the number of unemployed South African Graduates with tertiary education is currently standing at 405 000. This number is rapidly increasing.

“The best way to not feel hopeless is to get up and do something. Don’t wait for good things to happen to you. If you go out and make some good things happen, you will fill the world with hope, you will fill yourself with hope” – Barack Obama

But, it is not hopeless. At #HireAGrad, we aim to make a difference!

Through #HireAGrad’s Scarce Skills Development Initiative for unemployed graduates, we are CHANGING the futures of downtrodden and demoralised unemployed South African graduates, for the better.

We are developing scarce skills targeting IMMEDIATE industry requirements, within the unemployed graduate market in South Africa.

Our purpose:

  1. Increasing the employability of the unemployed graduates
  2. Securing employment opportunities for our trained graduates
  3. Driving the direction of scarce skills development across a range of industries in South Africa

Our starting point: Analytics, Engineering and IT!

  • At #HireAGrad we are addressing the requirements for scarce skills, specifically aimed certain STEM fields (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) which are proven to be crucial to the development of entire economies.
  • We aim to uplift and play a catalyst role in the development of unemployed South African youth, enabling these young individuals to GROW and CONNECT THE DOTS.
  • Research shows that, whether these youths end up in corporate jobs or become entrepreneurs, the foundation of understanding what business is all about, is a significant starting point for many.
  • Once the fundamentals are in place, the sky is the limit!

Our process:

  • We believe that if our initiative is to be a success, we must ensure that all parties are committed to the process; i.e. you can bring a horse to water, but you cannot force it to drink. Thus, we qualify each group of graduates coming into our initiative, via a range of industry and/or vocation specific assessments, which are approved by industry professionals.
  • We facilitate initial Crash-Course Scarce Skills and Soft Skills’ “Business Etiquette” Training for our selected unemployed graduates, over a period of four to six months (dependent on the learning capacity of each Graduate), before letting them loose into industry. Certain scarce skill elements of our training are customised, versus other standard modules which talk to business etiquette, influencing and engaging.
  • During our training, we include relevant industry research, immediate industry trends and pain points, and pull key individuals from industry in, enabling the opportunity for our graduates to gain immediate exposure to key industry players.
  • Simultaneously, we enable the training of our graduates by involving everyone in the practical application of soft and technical (scarce) skills learnt in real-life situations; i.e. data analysis, trend analysis, statistical research, process mapping, simulations, application development, requirements elicitation, stakeholder engagement and more.

Our goal and how organisations can get involved:

  • We aim to develop a multitude of scarce skilled resources throughout South Africa and Africa, linking graduates and employers from all walks of life.
  • We are keen to identify and partner with organisations and employers just as passionate as we are about employing and enabling our youths. We need your help to create specific and fit-for-purpose assessments and practical tasks which we can provide our youths whilst “in training”.
  • The more meaningful, challenging and REAL the opportunities for our graduates are, the greater the IMPACT we will have on the youth and on the South African economy.
  • In addition, until this initiative becomes a commercially viable one, we are dependent on self-funding to make it a reality. Thus, any contributions, even old desks, chairs, laptops, printers, stationary, lunches for our graduates and volunteers, and more, will go a long way to enabling our initiative. But, we don’t just want hand-outs, we want partners. Partners who are invested in the success of our Youth!
  • We are at the precipice of something amazing, opening doors for young individuals to achieve greatness and succeed. With your help, no matter how small, #HireAGrad will begin enabling and growing the youth of South Africa.
  • Invest in our Youth, invest in our Future.

Get involved

If you would like to get involved, assist with industry research or practicals which our Graduates can perform on your behalf, become a sponsor.

For more information regarding our initiative please contact Nikki Pahliney at Nikki@mindsinsync.co.za or on 082 781 8252.

For more information about our Mission, Milestones and how you can get involved, please see our website: www.mindsinsync.co.za/hireagrad.

Our latest video around our milestones is available at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QlfcqkwOtRQ&feature=youtu.be

Name: Nikki Pahliney

Email Address: nikki@mindsinsync.co.za

Telephone: 082 781 8252

Organisation: Minds in Sync

Province of Organisation: Gauteng


Mngoma, N., 2016. Graduates are ‘begging’ for jobs. [Online]

Available at: http://www.iol.co.za/news/opinion/graduates-are-begging-for-jobs-2034214

[Accessed 20 March 2017].

Spaull, N., 2016. Black graduate numbers are up. [Online]

Available at: https://mg.co.za/article/2016-05-17-black-graduate-numbers-are-up

[Accessed 20 March 2017].




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