GIFS launches academic programme to boost career opportunities for young people

The Graduate Institute of Financial Sciences (GIFS) has heeded calls by various sectors for more intentional skills development for young South Africans. GIFS’ latest employment innovation has seen young people getting an opportunity to improve their skillset and advance their careers.

“We decided to partner with the Insurance Institute of Gauteng (IIG) because they also recognise the need for financial services to develop young people’s capabilities,” explains GIFS’ CEO Dr Kershen Pillay. The IIG Academic Programme has since been launched in Johannesburg with the first cohort of 15 learners being identified.

“The idea was to identify star employees in financial services and then reward them with this study opportunity that will enable them to progress faster up the career ladder,” adds Pillay.

The IIG, as an insurance umbrella body in Gauteng, has long championed the need for skills development in the sector. It’s an area GIFS is passionate about. Pillay has led numerous thought leadership sessions where he has advocated for more soft skills training for new entrants to financial services, explaining that because of South Africa’s vast inequalities people come into the workplace with differing levels of understanding of conduct. And this key soft skills component is what often sets apart young employees from disadvantaged backgrounds from their counterparts who come from affluence.

GIFS is determined to level that playing field.


21 June 2023