GE has announced a five-year, $2.5 million USD investment in Johannesburg to kick start ‘Next Engineers’, a global effort aimed at expanding the diversity of young people in engineering.
GE has chosen Johannesburg as one of four founding locations, with the goal of inspiring more than 3,500 local students aged 13 to 18 in grades 8 to 12, providing first-hand engineering experiences, and providing financial help to pursue further engineering studies.
GE is partnering with PROTEC, South Africa’s leading non-profit organization that empowers local students to pursue and grow in STEM-based careers, to implement Next Engineers locally.
Earlier this year, GE committed up to $100 million USD to launch Next Engineers. Over the next decade, the goal is to reach more than 85,000 students across 25 locations globally.
GE has been operating in the African market for more than 123 years, with Johannesburg being the first overseas office outside the USA. GE rises to the challenge of building a world that works through its expertise and innovation in healthcare, aviation, and power – contributing to key sectors of South Africa’s economy.
Nyimpini Mabunda, CEO, GE South Africa, said: “Our growing global economy will require more engineers to solve society’s most pressing challenges – from sustainable flight to quality healthcare and clean energy. Next Engineers allows us to expose students to the world of engineering at a young age through invaluable hands-on learning experiences.
“Next Engineers will not only provide a platform for Johannesburg’s young people from different backgrounds to bring their unique perspectives to engineering but also empower them to foster the skills needed to build a world of the future that works. We recognize that for us to make a sustainable impact, we must be deliberate in our efforts to support social change.”
Balan Moodley Chief Executive Officer at PROTEC, comments: “We are thrilled to be working alongside the GE Foundation and taking on the role of Lead Partner for its Next Engineers initiative in Johannesburg. It will transform the lives of so many within the program, and of course, across the world, and we are excited to be a part of it. With an initiative like this, we aim to contribute towards changing the future of engineering.”