News


A pioneer and role model

August 2019 News

There is a serious shortage of women in engineering. Globally it is a male dominated field. According to ECSA, only 11% of the total number of engineers registered are female and only 4% of these are professional engineers. AVK production foreman, Portia Magongoma is making a difference and inspiring other women to pursue careers in engineering.

Portia Magongoma
Portia Magongoma

Magongoma has a Bachelor of Technology degree in Mechanical Engineering and recently graduated with a BA in Business Administration. She also has a National Diploma in Mechanical Engineering, a Certificate in Operations Management, and is a trained forklift operator. A registered member of ECSA, this mother of two says: “It is possible to have both a successful career and a family.”

As a newly qualified engineer, Magongoma’s first job was on-site at a platinum mine. “I was young, female, on my first job, having to give instructions to older, experienced men on a mine,” she says. She recalls how language was the biggest barrier. They spoke Tswana and Afrikaans while she spoke Zulu and English. “I was giving instructions and discussing safety protocols – the message had to be perfectly clear.” So she learned the languages.

When Magongoma moved to AVK Valves she was far more experienced and had gained confidence. “AVK Valves has been incredibly supportive of me and my vision,” she says. AVK Valves funded her Business Administration degree and she’s looking forward to giving back to the company through her new knowledge and expertise and inspiring other women to follow their dreams. “Some people think women can’t do this and can’t do that,” she says. “AVK Valves and Gunric never had those stereotypes. Women can do anything.”

As the first one in her family to graduate from university, Magongoma is incredibly proud to be where she is. “I will teach my children that anything is possible if you are committed. Yes, there are challenges, but the key to success is to know what you want and focus on the goal rather than the obstacles.”

Magongoma’s vision doesn’t end there. She was drawn to engineering because of its diversity. “I want to be an expert in valves – every aspect from design to production to quality assurance. I love working with my hands and really enjoyed my time on the shop floor.” Now she has her sights set on bigger things. “I have combined engineering with business administration and management because I want to know everything there is to know about valves and the business of valves – from the engineering to HR, to labour law and finances – all of it. The only thing that convinces people that they can reach their impossible goals is to see a role model actually doing it.” Magongoma has high hopes for the future. With her energy, passion and dedication, she is set to be a pioneer in the engineering industry.

For more information contact Sayuri Naidoo, AVK Southern Africa, +27 11 908 3760, sayuri@avkvalves.co.za, www.avkvalves.com




Share this article:
Share via emailShare via LinkedInPrint this page

Further reading:

From the editor's desk: Automation professionals need communication strategy too
September 2019, Technews Publishing (SA Instrumentation & Control) , News
Catching the eye of a potential customer has become more difficult than ever thanks to the ethos of information promiscuity that defines the 21st century. It’s never been easy to stand out in a crowded ...

Read more...
South Africa sets plans in motion with new LNG import terminal
September 2019 , News
State-owned freight logistics firm, Transnet, said on Tuesday that it had signed a cost-sharing agreement with the World Bank’s International Finance Corporation (IFC) to conclude a feasibility study ...

Read more...
Emerson completes acquisition of Zedi’s software and automation businesses
September 2019, Emerson Automation Solutions , News
Emerson has announced the purchase of Zedi’s software and automation businesses. The addition of Zedi’s cloud supervisory control and data acquisition (scada) platform will further enable Emerson to help ...

Read more...
ETG conducts first Safety over EtherCAT Plug Fest
September 2019 , News
The EtherCAT Technology Group (ETG) recently held its first Safety over EtherCAT (FSoE) Plug Fest with great success. Numerous manufacturers of EtherCAT safety master and slave devices came to Verl, Germany, ...

Read more...
Endress+Hauser strengthens ­expertise for advanced analysis
September 2019, Endress+Hauser , News
Endress+Hauser has expanded its centre of competence for advanced analysis in Lyon, France. The Group invested €2 million in a new production facility and office space to meet growing demand in the area ...

Read more...
Festo inspires with smart digital solutions at the Automation Expo
September 2019, Festo , News
Festo hosted the first leg of the Automation Expo in Johannesburg at the Sandton Convention Centre, while the second took place in Port Elizabeth at the Boardwalk Convention Centre. Both ended on a high ...

Read more...
AVK Academy gains traction in Africa
September 2019 , News
The Academy, the training arm of AVK Southern Africa, has taken the Group’s training into Africa. With training on basic and advanced valve fundamentals recently concluded at Mulonga Water and Sewerage ...

Read more...
WearCheck acquires reliability testing company, boosts services
September 2019 , News
Durban-based condition monitoring specialists, WearCheck, has bought Anglo Field Services (AFS), which adds three new established divisions to the company’s comprehensive reliability solutions portfolio, ...

Read more...
Siemens South Africa puts Smart City vision into action
September 2019, Siemens Digital Industries , News
Fourteen months ago, Siemens installed a microgrid at its headquarters in Midrand and data shows it is using 50% less supplied energy, drawing it from solar resources instead. By extracting energy off ...

Read more...
Implementing Industry 4.0 technologies in Africa’s manufacturing environment
September 2019 , News
African manufacturers are aspiring to raise their standards and increase the efficiency of their enterprise operations. To discuss the rising prevalence of technology within the industrial realm, the ...

Read more...