ENGAGEMENT 1: COURSE INTEGRITY:
A training centre, initiated in 2011, aimed specifically at providing training in renewable energy technologies. The primary offering is the Wind Turbine Service Technician course (WTST).
It was AltGen’s task to provide independent verification of the system, including evaluating the learner selection criteria, the reasons for the appointment of delivery partners, and including a summative assessment “of learning” to assess student skill acquisition, and a formative assessment “for learning” to collect detailed information that educators could use to improve learner instruction. Other evaluated elements included the learner materials, the workplace evaluation and logbook, the WTST implementation plan including a risk assessment, and a holistic project close-out on the three primary project components: learner selection criteria, the curriculum and assessment specification, and the learner results.
ENGAGEMENT 2: WIND TURBINE TECHNICIAN TRACER STUDY
The formal engagement here was to “review the career development and professional progress of at least three groups of SARETEC wind energy technician training course graduates” over some time, to track their engagement with and absorption by the South African wind energy industry and thereby indirectly assess the success of both the initial training in Germany and the second and third WTST courses which were offered in South Africa. The study’s secondary objective was to assess students’ motivation for attending, career and professional development after completion, future expectations in terms of career growth, and current and evolving employment statistics of the graduates.
The engagement took place for 12 months, with entry and exit interviews conducted with all of the course participants as well as their supervisors. The outcome revealed a fascinating interplay between the recruitment process, the engagement of SARETEC with the OEM’s and the subsequent qualified success of the absorption of the graduates into the wind energy industry. It included a set of recommendations for SARETEC to ensure the successful placement of graduated technicians.