Internships for young engineers do more than provide practical experience, they assist in developing and enhancing problem-solving, and critical-thinking skills, giving newbies the chance to reflect on their professional experiences and demonstrate their potential, proficiency, and talents. This is the experience of young graduate, Nketa Leteane (26), who is the second engineering intern to join Boshof Solar Power, where she is learning how to work in a professional environment.
As a female engineer Nketa feels that she is able to show younger generations of women that opportunities are available and that women are as capable as men. She is also an advocate for clean renewable energy, making her job an ideal fit.
“Going to a technical high school had a big influence in me deciding to study engineering, I enjoyed the whole process of constructing a working circuit and problem solving. I love how engineering incorporates science and mathematics to solve real world problems and develop new products. For example, the photovoltaic effect which is a chemical phenomenon is used here at Boshof Solar Power to generate electricity. This method of producing electricity is beneficial to the environment and helps solve issues affecting the world like climate change,” explained Leteane.
Nketa works alongside the plant manager, Jacob Mbiza, who known to be driven by more than just his role in producing clean renewable energy; he finds great job satisfaction in making a positive impact in the lives of those working alongside him, as well as in the surrounding communities, which directly benefit through the solar plant’s various economic development programmes.
“I have already learnt so much about how the solar power plant operates as my site manager goes into detail when explaining how different parts of the plant work,” she added.
Having joined Globeleq South Africa’s intership programme at the beginning of 2023, as part of a cohort of eight, Nketa hails from the neighbouring town of Welkom, and is the first female intern to join the team at Boshof Solar Power.
“I’m pleased to work so close to my home town, as I get to see my family more often and I am easily available to offer support when needed, plus the transition to Boshof was untroubled as I find Welkom quite similar to Boshof,” concluded Nketa.