Departments invited to enrol youth in career programmes

Monday, June 13, 2022
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Public Service and Administration Acting Minister, Thulas Nxesi, has called on government departments and public entities to enrol young people in internships as part of the Breaking Barriers to Entry into the Public Service Programme (BB2E) and the Cadet Programme.

These programmes are aimed at preparing young people for careers in the public sector and for the work environment in general, as the country begins National Youth Month.

The five-day BB2E course and the 18-month Cadet Programme are offered by the National School of Government (NSG) and target unemployed graduates with post-school qualifications, and interns in the public sector and statutory bodies.

The BB2E course introduces young people to government and teaches them how government works and the strategies for delivering quality public services.

It also teaches them how public funds are administered and managed, how to carry out basic administrative and communication functions, the policies and prescripts that guide the appointment of persons into the public service, and how to write CVs and prepare themselves for interviews.

In a statement on Monday, Nxesi said the unemployment rate among youth with post-school qualifications is very high in the country.

“The public service, as the largest employer, has responded to this challenge by enabling unemployed graduates to gain experience through the Public Service Graduate Internship and Learnership Programme.

“In addition to this, the NSG has introduced the BB2E course and the Cadet Programme. The aim is to prepare the unemployed graduates for employment opportunities in the public sector.

“This is a very important investment in our youth and promotes their development. As we mark National Youth Month, we invite government departments and public entities to enrol youth in these critical development programmes,” Nxesi said.

The 18-month Cadet Programme is a sister initiative to the successful Breaking Barriers to Entry into the Public Service initiative and seeks to deepen the understanding of the public sector, whilst also covering issues in the broader social entrepreneurial space.

It is made up of four courses/modules, which are: The Constitution and the Administration of the Public Sector, Ethics in the Public Service, Writing for Government and Personal Mastery. 

The Minister emphasised that the Personal Mastery component is particularly important because it covers other generic employability skills that are necessary in the workspace in both the public and private sectors.

These include self-management, emotional intelligence, job search skills, problem solving skills, as well as entrepreneurship/creating your own job.

Nxesi said the ultimate goal is to shape the young graduates into “public service cadres of a special kind”.

The attributes of such public service cadres are:

  • Breaking new ground: A public servant who will be able to make personal interventions to translate policy into action.
  • Inspiring success: A public servant who is self-motivated and ready to motivate others to serve the public.
  • Raising the standard: A public servant who is responsive and capable of giving her/his best regardless of whether he/she is in the front office or at management level.
  • Nothing is impossible: A public servant who does not use policy or resource constraints as an excuse for not doing work but comes up with turn-around strategies to salvage a failing situation.
  • Making a difference to people: A public servant who is always committed, results-oriented and measures the impact of her/his actions against the public’s expectations.
  • Collective responsibility and teamwork: A public servant who believes in partnership, considers the opinion of other colleagues, peers and the public, and is able to network with organs of civil society, community development workers and all other stakeholders.
  • On board: A public servant who is on board is one who owns the processes of service delivery and understands that blame for the failure of the system should be laid squarely on his/her shoulders.


On 20-24 June 2022, 45 officials from different national and provincial departments will attend a training of trainers (TOT) session to be empowered and developed to train the youth on Personal Mastery.

This follows a successful TOT session that was conducted in November 2021, which was attended by 40 officials. 

In March 2022, at total of 288 Young Patriots from the National Youth Development Agency and the Department of Arts, Sports and Culture attended Personal Mastery course. 

“The feedback received from learners and officials from both the NYDA and the Department of Arts and Culture was extremely positive.  We thus encourage departments and entities across all spheres of government to enrol young graduates (interns) on the Cadet Programme,” Nxesi said.

For enquiries and enrolment, relevant officials in departments should contact The National School of Government call centre on 0861008326, via email on or visit the website on –