THE Integrated Mining Technical Training (IMTT) in collaboration with Vocation Education and Training Authority (VETA) make big success story in promotion of local content in the mining sector.
Since the programme was initiated in 2008, at least 71.8 per cent of the graduates have been employed in the mining companies.
Speaking in Dodoma yesterday, a VETA instructor, Mr John Nathan said the programme which is being implemented in collaboration with Tanzania Chamber of Mines (TCM) is aimed at equipping students with the apprenticeship skills to venture into mining companies.
He said the students focus more on practical lessons, so that they produce graduates with the pre-requisite skills and knowledge in the mining companies.
Mr Nathan said the programme started in 2008 and TCM was given the mandate to act as main sponsor for the programme and coordinate with the sponsors in the mining companies.
Currently, he said, they have nine different sponsors who are responsible for supporting the programme namely BARRICK, Geita Gold Mining, Kabanga, Sandvik, Mantra, Pan-Africa, Atlass copco and Shanta Mining.
He said VETA is running the programme in which, students attend class for three years leading to the award of Certification of National Vocational Award 111 in industrial electrical fitting, auto electric, plater/ welder, heavy machinery and equipment and fitting and machining.
"The training consists of theoretical and practical training at VETA-Moshi and on job training at mining industries, the mode of training allows apprentices to stay at college for four months, four months in site and vice-versa throughout the training" he said.
From 2009 they have enrolled 1,174 students, 866 have graduated of the number 621 have been employed in the mining companies.
Moreover, he said, almost 18 graduates have attained employment in the mining companies in Mauritania and Senegal.
For his part, TCM Communication and Advocacy Manager, Mr Majani Wambura said they are determined to sharpen youth skills and take up the employment opportunities in the mining companies which were being taken by foreigners.
He said they collaborated with the government to improve the curriculum so that the graduates get the needed apprenticeship needed in the mining companies and decided to add one year specifically for on job training.
Mr Wambura said the programme has been a success as more and more Tanzanians were replacing foreigners in mining companies.
He said the graduates have showcased skills and he was optimistic that they could as well be of great use in the strategic projects like Julius Nyerere Hyro-Power Project (JNHPP) as well as other industries.
He said with the skills, graduates are able to set up their small and medium industries as well carry on with the technical maintenance as they are well versed with industrial machines.