Student Support Service (SSS)
Student Support Services (SSS) have a major role to play within the College to ensure access to education and training and to develop individuals holistically. The SSS unit of the college is structured along the key two-pronged function areas of student support services, namely, academic and social support functions. The SSS unit is structured such that there are personnel planted across the five campuses, whose activities is co-ordinated SSS Manager at Head Office who has the overall responsibility across all function areas of SSS and is accountable for SSS in its entirety. At Campus Level, the SSS Officers for academic and social services are supported by administration personnel.
While the College has structured its functionality in alignment to the National Student Support Services Framework, these functions happen broadly across three levels of service. These are:
The college has an induction programme, run at each campus in a form of a formal programme and talks. While, the programme aim at informing the student about their study journeys at the College, it is however, limited in terms of information about the world of work, associated with each programme. Whist a competency and placement test is being administered; learner placement is largely depended on students’ choice and academic record.
During the course
The College implements a Systematic Tutorial Programme facilitated by the Student Support Officers-Academic. They assist students by way of selected groups of students from the classrooms who have academic challenges in learning, parents are also involved in this process by way of communication through letters. Academic Support Officers are in this case Tutors to students. The College is working on a consolidated programme pulling all related activities across varies programmes into a standard programme running in a sustainable manner. Some of the standing items for the SSS personnel are monthly reports together with basic academic counselling statistics and records, examination preparation consultation records, etc. Each campus has a software programme to assist students with English and Mathematics. This programme is used by students during their out of class time. Alongside the academic services are social and emotional programmes that support students with social and psychological related issues. These are offered by qualified psychologists. Each campus has a data base of services to which we refer students with specific needs whereby among others we have Social Services and SAPS.
In terms of providing information about the world of work there is no formal process other than lecturers and student support officers providing an overview of “their own view” of what the world of work entails. Apart from formal classroom education in Life Orientation Classes very little is done to provide students with the necessary Life Skills needed to enter the world of work. The College has linkages with employers that could assist graduates to get access to placement or employment opportunities however these are limited. The college has developed a Youth Development Unit that focuses on placement of students, preparing them for the workplace and tracking graduates.
Students participate in the SSS structure through the Student Representation Council (SRC). Members of the SRC serve in the structure of the SSS at Campus level. They further contribute and work towards the betterment of the SSS, as outlined in the FET Act 16 of 2006, through representation in finance and academic committees of the college governance council. They further serve in campus and college bursary committees. The College SRC, through the SSS, is annually exposed to training and development whereby an external service provider who is conversant with the FET and HET related issues on student Leadership is invited to provide training to all SRC Members.