CUT rolls out the first-of-its-kind short course in renewable energy to refine the skills of subject advisors and STEM teachers in Free State Province
Photo: Dr Sandile Koko, Senior Lecture: Electrical Engineering, demonstrates the PV System’s operation.
Renewable energy is an emerging field, and South Africa faces the challenges of developing education and training programmes that are responsive to the needs of this sector. Therefore, teachers in the STEM field may need developmental support in content or pedagogical knowledge of the renewable energy field.
The Central University of Technology, Free State (CUT), Faculty of Engineering, Built Environment, and Information Technology (FEBIT), together with the Energy and Water Sector Education and Training Authority (EWSETA) and the South African Council for Educators (SACE) rolled-out the first of its kind short course in renewable energy to hone skills of STEM teachers in Free State Province. The five-day professional developmental short course is envisioned to sharpen the skills of subject advisors and STEM teachers in the Free State Province. The renewable energy programme kickstarted on 29 May and will be concluded on 2 June 2023 at the Bloemfontein Campus.
For the duration of the programme, topics such as introduction and fundamentals, Photovoltaic (PV) system components, Introduction to wind power generation, Solar thermal technologies, and Hydro power generation will be covered. In addition, the participants will also be exposed to Solar Photovoltaic (PV) and Wind power practical exercises.
Asked about the programme’s benefits to future STEM teachers, one of the programme facilitators and presenters, Prof. Kanzumba Kusakana, said that professional development is critical for teachers to function effectively and keep up with the ever-changing technologies in the STEM field.
“The programme provides the current content and pedagogical knowledge, and the roll-out of Renewable Energy (RE) systems is intended to provide new job opportunities, thus supporting employment growth and socio-economic development as envisioned in the National Development Plan. In addition, the programme will further assist in increasing learners’ interest in the renewable energy field, leading to increased students and graduates in the STEM fields, particularly this fast-growing renewable energy career.”
Subject Advisors and STEM teachers who participated in the programme back row from left: Prof. Kanzumba Kusakana, acting Head of Department and Senior Lecturer in Electrical, Electronic, and Computing Engineering: Electrical Engineering, Marcia Mothupi, Subject Advisor: Civil Technology, Molitle MD, Subject Advisor: Technology, Matshedisho Dibabong, Subject Advisor; Technology, Letlhogonolo Taiwe, Educator: Natural Sciences, Ilze Janse Van Rensburg, Subject Advisor: Technology and Robotics, Pieter Viljoen, Subject Advisor; Civil Technology, Manie Havenga, Subject Advisor: Civil Technology.
Front row from left: Dr Sandile Koko, Senior Lecturer: Electrical Engineering; Dr Patrick Manditereza, programme coordinator, Senior Lecturer & EWSETA Chair in the Department of Electrical, Electronic and Computer Engineering; Sipho Mpotle, Subject Advisor: Technology and Coding Robotics and Motsiri Tau, Subject Advisor: Technology.
The Energy & Water Seta (EWSETA) funded the short course through the EWSETA Chair at CUT and supported by the provincial Department of Education (DoE). Furthermore, the system is accredited by the South African Council for Educators (SACE) for 15 CPD points.Uploaded: 31 May 2023
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