On Friday 18 February 2022, PMC hosted a bursary award signing ceremony at Cajori Hotel in Phalaborwa. Palabora remains alert to COVID-19 and to ensure compliance, attendance was limited to one family member of each bursary recipient to comply with the conditions at the venue and the bursars themselves, attended the ceremony which was streaming live through an online service portal.
PMC has over many years been a pillar in the community through sustaining the economy of Ba-Phalaborwa and today we have stepped forward to support skills development. This year alone, the business has awarded 153 study bursaries to students in the local communities, extending their offering to a diversity of disciplines, beyond the limits of mining related studies. The value of these bursaries are estimated at an excess of R 20 million for the year 2022.
PMC BURSARY PROGRAMME
The bursary program coordinated by Training Department will support learners with coverage of full tuition, residence, meals, laptop and book allowances at recognised institutions of higher learning throughout the entire country.
Three former bursary holders who are now employed by PMC, shared their experience and how they were able to overcome the difficult odds in their homesteads. It was such an encouraging but emotional account of the bursars’ academic journeys and how their relationship with PMC was able to transform their lives into an opportunity for hope. Nyiko Khosa, former bursar from Lulekani, completed his BEng Tech in Metallurgy in December 2021 and joined the PMC Graduate program in January 2022, said this in appreciation.
“This was also a great opportunity as it allowed me to complete my studies without a hassle. I am now able to help my family financially as my mother is a domestic worker and my father is a retrenched operator from one of our local contractors, Sullwald. PMC changed my life as I am born from a disadvantaged background which I did not allow to define my destiny. I would also like to extend my deepest gratitude to PMC management for the opportunity,” he said.
ALL STAKEHOLDERS CONSULTED
The community baseline study is in consultation with stakeholders such as Ba-Phalaborwa Community Forum. The Department of Education, Ba-Phalaborwa municipality and the Traditional Authorities established a clarion call for the provision of bursaries. We have resolved to provide bursaries as an investment in the local communities and we certainly know that we will be reaping the benefits of this investment in the foreseeable future.
This investment is a clear demonstration that PMC understands and values the needs of their stakeholders, and this is a confirmation that together we will build a sustainable future in Ba-Phalaborwa through education. Testimonies shared by the former recipients, echoed truth that education is indeed an equalizer and that having PMC as your sponsor, silences all potential financial noises.
PMC management in attendance echoed words of encouragement to the families and the 2022 recipients: “PMC is taking education and skills development to greater heights. I am urging all bursars to grab this opportunity with both hands and run with it. The world is evolving, and it requires education. Through this bursary, our bursars will be able to meet industry demand and requirements,” Mr. Dennis Modise, Senior Manager at Human Resource mentioned.
COMPANY EFFORTS APPLAUDED
The Training Manager, Ms. Mabore Macheru described the company efforts as follows:
“At PMC we are moving well with the trend in technology, this is just not only a dream for PMC but a reality, as we are currently executing state of art technologies, such as Lift II project and Smelter Retrofit. This will require engineers, technicians and professionals with the right skills and it is for this reason that we are putting more effort on investing in education and development. “
Today’s event echoes the words of Nelson Mandela’s that “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”