The Executive Vice President (EVP) and Head of Gold Fields West Africa, Mr Alfred Baku, has launched the Gold Fields Ghana Foundation Graduate Trainee Programme for graduates in the Mines host communities.
The programme was designed to build a talent pipeline for the company by enrolling graduates who have completed National Service.
It would take the beneficiaries through a two-year on-the-job training development.
Launching the programme in Tarkwa, Mr Baku said their Learning and Development Department has structured the programme to enhance the learning experiences of trainees by exposing them to various aspects of mining operations.
The programme also formed an integral part of the firm’s host community skills development strategy, which aims at enhancing the quality of human capital in communities hosting the Tarkwa and Damang Mines, he said.
He was hopeful that the graduates would acquire the necessary skills and competencies to make them employable in their chosen professions after successfully completing the programme.
According to the EVP, the first batch of 47 candidates were enrolled in November 2018 and were currently acquiring knowledge and skills in departments such as mining, metallurgy, finance, human resources and community affairs.
The foundation, he said, had set aside about $500, 000 to support the programme for two years after which a new batch would be enrolled.
“Graduate unemployment continues to be a major challenge for this country. After four years of tertiary and one year of national service, parents expect to see their wards gainfully employed to ease the burden on the family” he said.
He stressed that, “Much as we desire to employ them after investing so much in preparing them for the job market, unfortunately we do not have the vacancies that match their skills set, else, they would be our first priority for employment”.
He asked the trainees to see the training programme as a golden opportunity to equip them with the requisite knowledge and skills for the job market, especially in the mining and the extractive industries.
“We also want our trainees to know that we have been monitoring their performance and work conduct since their enrolment onto the programme. I must say, l am impressed with some of the positive feedback l have received regarding your performance and work ethics over the year” he said.
He applauded the efforts of the chiefs and the community employment committee during the selection process, stressing that, they carried out the task transparently devoid of controversies.
Mr Baku said Gold Fields appreciated the cordial relationship that existed between the firm and its stakeholders and that they would continue to nurture it for the benefit of the company, their host communities and the country at large.
Mr Gilbert Kennedy Asmah, Municipal Chief Executive for Tarkwa-Nsuaem, commended Gold Fields for unveiling the programme as it would go a long way to ameliorate the challenge of unemployment in the country.
He tasked the beneficiaries to attach seriousness to the programme to ensure that they attained optimum benefit from it to help in building the Tarkwa-Nsuaem and Prestea Huni-Valley Municipalities.
Nana Kwabena Amponsah IV, Chief of Bosomtwe Traditional Area, pleaded with the trainees to work hard in their various departments to enable Gold Fields sustain the programme.