- A young lady has become the first black female aircraft engineer in SA
- She works for SAA and inspects aircraft for flaws and abnormalities
- The 31-year-old encourages the youth to pursue this career path as it has many opportunities
Lefentse Phokwane has accomplished an incredible feat. She has become the first and only black woman to be appointed as an aircraft maintenance engineer in the country.
The 31-year-old grew up in Vosloorus in Ekurhuleni and wanted to be a chemical engineer. Fate had a different plan and she ended up studying for a Diploma in Non-Destructive Testing at the Vaal University of Technology.
According to SowetanLIVE, she said that there was no longer space for chemical engineering applicants at the institution. She wasn't particularly interested in the alternative but thought that she would pick up chemical engineering if someone dropped out during the course of the academic year.
Fortunately, it didn't work out that way and she found her calling. She graduated and completed her trade test in 2012, becoming an aircraft engineer.
After obtaining her qualification, Phokwane applied for an apprenticeship at SAA Technical in 2009
As part of her job, she performs inspections on aircraft and aircraft components to look for cracks and defects which might affect the aircraft's safety and structural integrity.
Her job means that she cannot to make any mistakes or miss any abnormalities on the aircraft because lives are at stake.
"According to their records, I am the third female in the world and the first one from Africa to receive this kind of training from their company."
Phokwane has encouraged young people to consider this career path because it has ample job opportunities.
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