As part of its effort to address the shortage of training opportunities in accurate measurements and related fields, the National Metrology Institute of South Africa (NMISA) celebrated the launch of its new training centre in Pretoria on 24 March 2023. A training centre like this is not only useful for metrology professionals, but also for traffic officers, medical professionals, health and safety officers at mines, as well as SMMEs.
NMISA is responsible for maintaining South Africa’s national measurement standards. They demonstrate their international equivalence by regularly taking part in international measurement comparisons. Successful participation in these comparisons implies that measurements performed in South Africa are accepted internationally. This enables manufactured goods, produced locally, can compete in international markets.
Dr Aletta Karsten, manager of the NMISA Training Centre, explains why the newly launched centre was established: “We have realised that there is a lack of training available to people working in measurement science. Metrology is a specialised field and not explicitly taught at university. To work in the metrology field, one needs to have a tertiary qualification, and then engage in on-the-job training. Also, measurement impacts so many other fields where training courses are required and therefore our courses cover a variety of subject matters relating to measurement science and technology like quality assurance, export requirements for trade, production efficiency in manufacturing etc. Therefore, our courses are applicable to all industries that require accurate measurement which includes training of medical professionals, health and safety offers at mines, municipality workers, traffic officers, manufacturers, SMMEs planning to trade across borders etc.”
Dr Karsten adds, “Our team understands the unique challenges organisations face. We provide flexible training programmes and accommodate both in-person and online courses to fit into busy work schedules. Moreover, we offer custom training solutions tailored to your specific needs and can adjust our content in consultation with employers to ensure that employees receive the training they require to succeed.”
Furthermore, Karsten adds that by using extensive industry experience, the training instructors provide high-quality instruction by “using up-to-date teaching methods, practical industry examples and cutting-edge equipment.”
Speaking at the opening address of the launch event, the NMISA CEO, Mr Ndwakhulu Mukhufhi remarked that “the new training centre was established to serve as an aggregation between academic learning and practical application.” He invited the industry representatives in attendance, to collaborate with NMISA and remarked on the importance of partnerships to ensure that the training centre delivers, supports, and provides the training services required by Industry. The training centre not only ensures skilled workers but also supports business development and manufacturing, which in turn boosts the local economy.
In South Africa, scientific metrology is the responsibility of NMISA, as the highest authority on accurate measurement in the country. Accurate and reliable measurements form part of our everyday life, playing a crucial role in health, safety, and the environment. NMISA is established by the Measurement Units and Measurement Standards Act, 2006 (Act No.18 of 2006), referred to as the “Measurements Act” and is one of the Technical Infrastructure entities reporting to the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (the dtic).
Aligning with the vision of the NMISA Africa Reference Institute to act as an effective vehicle to drive the improvement of analytical competence and capabilities, the Training Centre provides the platform to engage in training endeavours that support the various industry sectors be it private, research, academic or Government.