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Title: Marketing communication of career opportunities for students in the South African space industry
Authors: Zuma, Khanya Philani 
Issue Date: 2017
The South African Space Industry is growing rapidly but is lacking in commercialization. Based on the literature review, the industry is not introduced to citizens at the stage at which they begin to plan their careers. Many learners venture into careers due to peer influence and choose careers that they do not have knowledge of. There are also barriers to communication between the industry and the Department of Higher Education, as shown by the fact that there are few high school students who have progressed to participate in the space industry.
The main aim of the study was to explore high school students’ awareness of the South African space industry; how career opportunities have been promoted to these students; and what has influenced such awareness, or lack thereof. The objectives of the study were to identify students’ levels of awareness of the South African space industry; to identify students’ perceptions of employment opportunities in the South African space industry; to identify the knowledge of the educational requirements to gain employment in the space industry; to determine the demographic differences of levels of awareness of the space industry in South Africa (male/female, grades 10, 11 and 12, types of schools); and to identify the marketing communication factors that influence students’ levels of awareness about the South African space industry.
A quantitative, descriptive study was employed, and structured questionnaires were administered to 171 respondents. Purposive and quota sampling methods were used for the study. The SPSS statistical package (version 23 for windows) was used to analyze the data. The study was conducted in selected high schools located in rural, urban and sub-urban areas within the EThekwini municipality region. In terms of validity, relevant statistical tests were undertaken to ensure the validity and reliability of the instrument. Confidentiality and anonymity was ensured. In term of ethical issues, permission was granted from the KwaZulu Natal Department of Education.

Some of the main findings of the study were that the majority of respondents indicated awareness of the space industry as a discipline in the field of science and technology. The respondents had limited knowledge about career opportunities. However, due to inadequate resources in rural schools the respondents’ knowledge about career opportunities was insufficient in these schools. Due to the lack of resources, the respondents did not have sufficient information to choose a career opportunity in space. Furthermore, differences in terms of resources (electricity supply, Internet access, classroom size, furniture and fittings, travelling time to and from school) and the location of school were noted. It was also noted that respondents are unclear about how and where to apply for space-related subjects. The space industry was found lacking in terms of marketing itself in South Africa. Thus, the marketing communication strategy needs to be developed and taken into consideration. It is recommended that the South African space industry should develop more outreach programmes; engage with the Department of Higher Education; sponsor science and technological projects; provide more scholarships; and create a Space Science University (SSU).
Submitted in fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Management Sciences Specialising in Marketing, Durban University of Technology, Durban, South Africa, 2017.
Appears in Collections:Theses and dissertations (Management Sciences)

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