Orapa Training Programme for Apprentices

Brief history of the Orapa Training College

Since its establishment in 1971, the Orapa Mine has made concerted efforts to develop and implement safer and more efficient ways of mining its valuable resource with as little impact to the environment as possible.

To this end it was clearly beneficial for the company to offer engineering training to its work force. The Orapa Training Centre was formed to provide this training, and enrolled its first nine apprentices in 1972. It became the Orapa Vocational Training Centre in 1987 when the government of Botswana implemented the Apprenticeship and Industrial Training Act.

The centre grew rapidly: By 2008 136 trainees were enrolled, and to date 916 qualified artisans have graduated.

Currently, the centre is known as the Orapa Technical College and operates under the auspices of the Botswana Training Authority (BOTA) and the Vocational Training Act of 1998.

Current Activities

Orapa Technical College trains apprentices not only for Debswana mines but also for other organizations across the country.

Orapa Mine boasts a team of highly qualified and seasoned personnel who, with their vast experience in the mining field, can offer relevant and invaluable training to both prospective employees and relevant others. The basic forms of training offered on site are:

  • On-the-job training: This form of training is designed to facilitate the incumbent with first-hand experience that will enable them to apply theoretical concepts learned in class and adapt them in practical scenarios.
  • Refresher training: Refresher training aids the student or incumbent to familiarise themselves and adhere to new system upgrades; mining policies and practices as well as mandatory protocol procedures of the mine.
  • Site simulation: This form of training is very important because it not only ensures the development of skills competencies within the workforce, but also helps the incumbent familiarise themselves with the actual mine environment while in the relative safety of a controlled environment.
  • Multi-skill training: This training program is designed to give the worker a greater field of skill and competence through the technical ability to operate more than just one instrument or vehicle in the mine.

Semi-skilled training of company employees is also done at the institution, with “C” and “B” Madirelo Trade Testing Centre certificate courses provided to improve employee efficiency and productivity.

Technician training, and trades such as plumbing, refrigeration mechanics, auto electrical, painter/decorator, bricklaying and carpentry are not trained in-house, but are managed through external providers.

Orapa Technical College is a registered examination centre for:

  • NCC Examinations
  • UNISA Examinations
  • Cambridge Examinations and
  • City & Guilds International Examinations


To enrol in the apprenticeship training programme an applicant must have five O-level subjects, including mathematics and science at grade 'C' level, and English at grade 'D' level. Consideration is also given to semi-skilled employees who have shown great potential and interest.


To enrol in the apprenticeship training programme an applicant must have five O-level subjects, including mathematics and science at grade 'C' level, and English at grade 'D' level. Consideration is also given to semi-skilled employees who have shown great potential and interest.

​​​The Jwaneng Mine Training Centre


The Jwaneng Mine Training Centre is an accredited training provider with the Botswana Qualification Authority (BQA) and a Debswana centre of excellence for Non-Technical training. The centre comprises a modern library with access to the internet and four training rooms. It offers programmes in the following categories:

Non-Technical Training

The Non-Technical Training section is responsible for developing the leadership and supervisory skills of employees to meet current and future business requirements at all levels of the organization. This section is also responsible for formulating and implementing developmental programmes for succession and localization initiatives.

Programmes offered:

  • Seven Active Management Behaviors
  • Performance Management System Principles and Systems
  • Supervisory Development Programme
  • Basic Supervision
  • SAP Line Manager/ Employee Self Service and Navigation
  • SAP Plant Maintenance
  • SAP eLearning programme

SHE Training

The Safety, Health and Environment (SHE) section is responsible for providing skills and competencies that are aimed at managing risks and hazards at the workplace to achieve the goal of Zero Harm.

Programmes offered:

  • SHE Induction
  • Emergency Response Training
  • Operational Risk Management
  • SHE Stewardship
  • Environmental Awareness
  • Occupational Hygiene Awareness

Ore Processing Training

The Ore Processing Training section is focused on building and improving technical and operational skills and competencies for Ore Processing employees at Jwaneng Mine.

Programmes offered:

  • Learner Official Programme (Metallurgist in Training)
  • Technical Training
  • Process Controller Training
  • Plant Operator Training
  • Basic Rigging and Overhead Crane Operation Training
  • Working at Heights Training

Mining Training

The Mining Training section teaches technical and operational skills to Mining Department personnel at all levels. The main objective of the training is to ensure the availability of skills and competencies to perform core mining activities.

Programmes offered:

  • Mining Learner Official Programmes
  • Foreman In Training
  • Machine Operator Training
  • Blasting Training
  • Vehicle Authorisations

Engineering Training

Engineering Training is aimed at providing relevant technical skills to all Engineering Department personnel in order to enhance equipment availability and safety performance.

Programmes offered:

  • Learner Official Programme (Engineer In Training)
  • Foreman in Training
  • Apprenticeship Training
  • Fatal Risk Control Training
  • Basic Radiation
  • Basic Hydraulics
  • Basic Pneumatics
  • Laser Alignment
  • Overhead Crane Operation​