WINDHOEK - The Namibian unemployment rate has been on the rise in recent years. Based on the Labour Survey Report of 2018, the unemployment rate stood at 33.4 percent in 2018, while the youth unemployment rate for persons aged between 19 and 34 stands at 44 percent. A low production rate in the agricultural sector caused by droughts and an increase in the working age population by over 55 000 of new entrants into the labour market are some of the contributing factors.
As a leading corporate player in the financial services market, Old Mutual says it is committed to employment creation through various programmes such as the Old Mutual Work Integrated Learning Programme. This programme enables university students to apply theoretical knowledge in a practical setting. By engaging proactively with local universities, Old Mutual harvests top students for its work integrated learning programmes. Its Internship and Graduate Accelerated Programmes (GAP) gives eligible students an opportunity to gain professional experience and career guidance in a highly specialised environment.
This year’s programme started in March with 13 students pursuing a wide range of careers in accounting, finance, marketing, economics, business administration, human resources and information technology. It is a great opportunity for these students to learn and embrace the positive features and experience that Old Mutual can instil in them. Students get the opportunity to gain basic hands-on experience and professional insights into their career path.
Work integrated learning is a valuable platform for Old Mutual to build capacity in a highly competitive industry. Since 2015, 63 students from local and international universities have benefited from work integrated learning at the company. Currently, 38 percent of Old Mutual’s permanent employees are below the age of 30 and 58 percent are women.
GAP student, Christopher Freygang who works as a Social Responsibility Consultant in the Marketing Department says this opportunity has been a blessing that allowed him to work in a field he is passionate about, while attaining the necessary experience in the corporate world. Graduates are mentored and groomed to take up positions within the organisation by their Supervisors, which contributes to diversity and growth in the business.
While recruitment is handled directly with University Student Liaison Officers, students should have an average of 70 percent and be in their Final year of studies, or a fresh graduate to qualify.