Cape Town - With more more university students profiled as victims of gender-based violence and femicide, victims within TVET colleges are seldom known.
The TVET (Technical Vocational Education and Training) College Strategic Industrial Partnership Summit drew to a close on Thursday with the final day spotlighting gender-based violence and femicide.
Higher Education, Science and Innovation Minister Blade Nzimande convened the opening session of the two-day summit on Wednesday at the Cape Town International Convention Centre.
The first-of-its kind summit aimed to establish and strengthen partnerships between TVET colleges with host and potential employers.
It was to further encourage and set in motion the department’s target to place 10 000 students in the workplace for experiential learning in 2022.
Sam Zungu, department deputy director-general: TVET, said that a recent report provided to the portfolio committee on higher education indicated that the lifetime risk of experiencing gender-based violence in South Africa at 45%, was above the World Health Organisation’s global average of 35%.
“Our PSET sector, it hosts just over 2.5 million youth who are more than 51% adolescent girls and young women between the ages of 15 and 24. With statistics indicating that 10% of all reported rape cases come from the higher education sector, I think that could be a cause for concern for all of us,” Zungu said.
Higher health research statistics for 2019 on the state of gender-based violence in the PSET sector indicated that 55% of males and 54% of females thought that sexual violence did not include forcing sex with someone you know; and 40% of students engaged in transactional sex, sex for marks and other similar forms leading to gender-based violence.
Department Deputy Minister Buti Manamela said: “There are a whole lot of particularly young women who lost their lives in our TVET colleges and, of course, in most instances the profile that we hear of victims of gender-based violence in our institutions are mostly students from universities.
“This does not mean that the scourge is any lesser, the crimes are any lesser in our TVET colleges. I really want us to think about how we place TVET college students, in particular young women who go to our TVET colleges, in our mind and that the intention of today’s deliberation is to ensure that they graduate alive.”