We talk to operations manager Vuyiswa Ncontsa about the recent successes of the TEACH SA marketingby TEACH South Africa
Interview with Vuyiswa Ncontsa, TEACH Operations Manager
TEACH South Africa recruits talented university graduates to teach in some of South Africa’s most disadvantaged schools for a period of two years. These teachers become TEACH Ambassadors and, after completing their two years, they join an alumni movement, fighting for educational equality for all learners in South Africa, using their influence in their corporate sector.
According to Vuyiswa Ncontsa about the recent successes of the TEACH South Africa marketing drive and plans for the future.
Last year the project generated a total of 567 applications whereas this year it has generated 655 applications in the first six weeks of recruitment. According to Vuyiswa, this is the result of increased advertising and the success of the marketing campaign.
“We are focused and deliberate in recruitment,” says Vuyiswa.
The focus has shifted to attracting quality applicants and not just hitting the targets that have been set. Our campus coordinators have been trained with a specific profile in mind, making sure we attract applicants of a high calibre.
The cutoff for the first round of 2009 applications was June 30, 2009. The successful applicants from this round will be scheduled into rounds of interviews, where we will choose our 2010 Ambassadors. “We hope to exceed the original goal of 210 ambassadors,” says Vuyiswa.
In the second phase of the 2009 recruitment drive, we will be expanding our recruitment base to more campuses across the country. These institutions should be diverse and promote multiculturalism. Vuyiswa cites another reason: “We had a lot of applicants who wanted to join, but were not willing to relocate.” By setting up the project in areas like Limpopo and Eastern Cape, we are able to accommodate these applicants.
To be able to start the project in these areas, we need to ensure there are support staff to aid the Ambassadors. “We have started recruitment in core provinces for support staff. We need to recruit people as we grow,” explains Vuyiswa.
The support staff cannot be just any type of person – they have to have certain values. These values are often found in retired teachers, who have skills and experience that we cannot afford to lose. Most important of all to Vuyiswa is attracting those who “define success by making a difference in people’s lives”.
The project continues to go from strength to strength. The team is committed and “if the applications are anything to go by, we’re very hopeful,” says an enthusiastic Vuyiswa.