EM Training Programme: My Experience
I am Siphesihle Dakile, uMphephethe, wasengwethe nangwavuma. uGwala, uVilakazi. A young, African girl from the dusty streets of Volksrust. Who, through a series of grace and luck, made it out and started a journey toward destiny. I endured a, uh, few years of university studying something I later would realize would not serve me and/ or my purpose. Whilst studying though, I managed to figure out what it was that I did want and started making steps toward it. It all really started when I decided I would teach kids around the neighbourhood how to dance. As I got better at that, I realized where my passion lied and well, is your uncle not Bob?
One stormy night, browsing the job search sites -as one does on stormy nights- I came across an ad posted by Genius Premium Tuition. They were looking for someone who was willing to learn, willing to work and had a passion for education. Basically, they were looking for me. So after a few backs and forths, I applied for the position, took the entrance tests, interviewed and started the first phase of training; all within a week. Coincidentally, I was in the final stages of submitting my Master’s degree. So again, this job was for me.
I won’t lie to you, the training was nothing like I’d ever seen and nothing like I could have expected. Firstly, there was no such thing as ‘orientation’. I went from being a candidate to being knee-deep in book summary essays, verbal and written tests, sales meetings etc in literally a blink of an eye. Moreover, it was the most delicate balance of learning and applying principles in real-time. I swear, I could have used an academic coach. However, I digress. What I mean to say is, it was the most significant experience of my life. No level of schooling could have prepared me for it. And I have a Masters, so I kinda know. Other than all the training in principle and conduct, it really exposed my mind to such amazing philosophies and ideologies that I had not been exposed to before. It led me to a journey of self-discovery that has made me more efficient in life and relations. It made me realize who I am, what I’m capable of, and the impact I can truly have on those few I will be blessed to meet in my lifetime. My perspective of the world broadened. I learned about psychology, how to learn, how to teach, how to listen and be present. Man, I learned way more than I thought the human mind was capable of learning in a month.
After having gone through all of that (which I really wish I could take you through, but we’d be here all day) there’s a newfound confidence in me. Confidence in myself, my self-image, the lens through which I see life. Confidence in the journey I have started and where it will lead. Confidence in my ability to be the help that people need. Confidence in making a change, a real change in at least one person’s life. With all the skills I learned during training, I can interact and communicate better with the people around me, colleagues, students and clients. I have learned to identify and put others’ needs before my own. I have learned such high-quality time management skills that I’m pretty sure I’ll never be late for anything ever again. Over and above, I have accumulated so much knowledge about the schooling system, curricula, learning styles and challenges, universities around the world; again, we could be here all day. All that to say, good luck to future trainees. I can guarantee it will be a rollercoaster ride, but instead of puke on the other end, you will come out with Gold. You will come out Gold.