New Era College launched EdgeFX STEM Kits, supported by a Tinkering Lab, in 2017. The STEM Kits are designed to boost learning by bridging the gap between theoretical lectures and practical application, giving students the opportunity to develop and test their real-world skills.

According to New Era College students, this new addition has made a world of difference.

Jefferey Moseki, 23, is a third year student in Electrical Engineering. He is such a fan of the program that he would like more sessions to be added to the schedule. “It just opened my understanding,” he says. “I am definitely confident of what I am taught in the class because of it.”

He’s not alone. Onkarabile Sonny Motlogelwa, 21, in the same year and course, says that he now sees the value of modules that he had previously overlooked, and credits the program with building his self-esteem. “I had the opportunity to work on different projects that involve what I had been taught in class and had not understood,” he says. “It allowed me to understand certain aspects in my field at my own pace.”

Because the STEM Kits promote DIY learning and experimentation, they also help learners develop the ability to become more creative in their thinking, and therefore more self-sufficient. With high numbers of unemployed graduates, this ability is necessary to enable young people to become job creators rather than job seekers.

Motlogelwa says, “I believe it can really help most students to see engineering in a better perceptive, not only as a way of securing a qualification but something enjoyable. This will inspire them to be self-employed after college, and not rely on the government.”

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