Today on AgriSETA Learner Connect we meet the 32-year-old Willem Liebenberg, a millwright at Rossgro Feeds operating in Mpumalanga, Gauteng and Limpopo. A millwright installs, dismantles, maintains, repairs, reassembles, and moves machinery in factories, power plants, and construction sites. It is a high-precision job requiring a skilled craft and tradesman.
On a typical day, Liebenberg completes a variety of tasks such as installing and disassembling equipment as well as making repairs or adjustments to machinery. He spends a lot of time reading and implementing instructions on putting machinery back together again.
To qualify as a millwright you need a national diploma in mechanical or electrical engineering and pass a millwright trade test. Liebenberg’s advice to learners is to “always be willing to learn, you can never out learn yourself”. He believes becoming an artisan can open endless doors and opportunities in the agricultural sector.
Liebenberg says that the best part about working in agriculture is knowing that he can contribute to life. “It’s rewarding to work in the country where I can feel the sun on my skin and breathe in fresh air.”
If this career or field of study interests you, simply follow the links below to find out more and about getting involved. Also check out the other careers to choose from in the agri sector on Food for Mzansi.
Okay, now it’s over to Willem Liebenberg, a millwright at Rossgro Feeds.
1Could you sum up your job for us? A millwright is a high-precision craftsman or skilled tradesman who installs, dismantles, maintains, repairs, reassembles, and moves machinery in factories, power plants, and construction sites.
2So, what does the day-to-day of your job entail? Millwrights complete a variety of tasks throughout the day, which might include: installing and disassembling machinery, making repairs or adjustments to machinery, reading and implementing instructions on assembling machinery.
What qualification do you need for this career? A National Diploma in mechanical or electrical engineering and a passing a millwright trade test.
4What are the character traits you need to be great at your job?Millwrights have distinct personalities. They tend to be realistic individuals, which means they’re independent, stable, persistent, genuine, practical, and thrifty. They like tasks that are tactile, physical, athletic, or mechanical. Some of them are also investigative, meaning they’re intellectual, introspective, and inquisitive.
5What subjects do I need to become a millwright? Entry requirements include a grade 9, 10 or 11 high school qualification or a National Technical Certificate (N) level 1 or 2. Matric certificate with mathematics literacy or a N2 or N3. Matric certificate with mathematics and science or a N3 or N4. Entry requirements for N4 is N3 passed with all four subjects.
6What do you love about agriculture as a space to work in? My work contributes to life, the reward to work in the country and where I can feel the sun on my skin and breathe in fresh air!
7Don’t be modest, tell us about your proudest career moments? When I was able to resolve a problem that an expert team could not resolve. It saved our company thousands of Rands.
8What do you do when you’re not at work? Spending time with my family at a dam on a boat, fishing.
9Any advice for young people who are inspired by your career story here on AgriSETA Learner Connect? Always be willing to learn, you can never outlearn yourself! To become an Artisan open endless doors.
10Where can I study to become a millwright? Training consists of theoretical and practical work:
- Theoretical training: At a technical Further Education and Training (FET) college or a correspondence course at Technical (N3 level);
- Practical training: In-service training under supervision of a qualified tradesman;
- Duration of course: 3 to 5 years depending on the experience of the candidate;
- Final examination: A compulsory trade test set by the Department of Labour to qualify as an artisan.
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