Engen Computer School graduates to start the New Year with new skills and renewed hope 

The Engen Computer School has capped another 70 graduates from South Durban whose basic computer skills qualification boosts their chances of finding employment. 

A graduation ceremony took place on 13 December at the Engen sponsored school, which has been transforming lives in South Durban for 13 years and has to date capped 2 670 graduates. 

In his speech, proud graduate Ismael Njock thanked Engen for empowering and uplifting the community and opening the doors of employment.  

“This has been a once in a lifetime opportunity,” said Njock. “Four months ago, most of us could not operate a computer at all and today we are all computer literate thanks to Engen and Added Academy.” 

Course convener and training director, Sheryl Casalis confirmed that five learners secured new jobs before even completing the course thanks to their new computer literacy skills. 

Zekethelo Shkosana, Chad Louw and Luyabong Ntyathi secured positions as cashiers which required them to be computer literate.   

Pindile Gumede secured a position as a Teacher Assistant at Nselele Primary School and Sindisiwe Ngubelanga secured a Teacher Assistant position at Khalipha Primary School.   

Well-known in the local community and frequently boasting a waiting list, Engen Computer School applicants must be unemployed school-leavers who reside in South Durban who are eager to upskill themselves. 

Excited by her new role, alumni Taeton Fynn contacted the Engen Computer School to share her story. 

“I completed my course in 2022 and managed to secure a learnership in payroll. The Engen Computer classes had a huge role to play in my being accepted.  Excel, Power Point and Outlook skills were exactly the skills I needed for my new role” commented Fynn.  

“Thanks to the course I was equipped to do my learnership and saw first-hand how important it is to be computer literate in today's work environment. I cannot thank Engen enough for the help and knowledge they have given me. Without them I would not be in the position I am in now,” she added. 

The Engen Computer School offers members of the South Durban community free introductory-level computer skills training, which covers 8-unit standards of the National Certificate: Information Technology: End User Computing. 

Casalis said she was pleased to see how many graduates had found job opportunities over the years or been accepted onto Learnerships as a direct result of their training at the Engen Community Computer School.  

“The Engen Community Computer School training makes a tangible difference to the attitudes of the people who attend the course.   

“Many arrive feeling hopeless and not believing that they have the ability to learn how to use a computer;” she added. 

The latest batch of graduates, who are all excited to put their newly acquired computer skills into practice, were congratulated by Sykry Hassim, the General Manager of the Engen Refinery.   

“Our 70 latest graduates all deserve a big round of applause for their effort,” commented Hassim. 

“At Engen, we believe that continuous community upskilling will ensure resilience and readiness in today’s everchanging and demanding new digital world.”  

While matric and age criteria are not prescribed, most students who attend the school are aged from 20 to 40.   

“The Engen Computer School has a proud history of giving graduates the knowledge and confidence to go out and seek jobs that would otherwise have been beyond their reach,” continued Hassim.  

“As a caring and responsible company, Engen is humbled to play a small role in positively changing lives of community members who reside in an area close to the Engen Refinery.”  

As a company, Engen champions nine of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), including SDG 4 – Quality Education, which aims to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all. 

Engen is also a long-time supporter of education in Durban through its Engen Maths and Science Schools (EMSS), which seek to address South Africa's key skills shortages in the engineering and technical fields, thereby contributing to the economic growth and transformation of the country. 

In KwaZulu-Natal, the EMSS programme offers additional Maths, Science and English tuition every Saturday to under-privileged learners from grades 10-12 at Fairvale High School, Ganges High School, Hillview High School and Umlazi Commercial High School. 

Operating for over 30 years, the EMSSs measure of success is an annual matric class that consistently surpasses the national average of successful learners and learners who matriculate with a bachelor’s pass.