“This training has given me the opportunity to perform a variety of tasks on car engines, which I never imagined I would be able to do.”
“She wishes to see more women explore the field of mechanics and not limit themselves to white collar jobs.”
At a time when more women are defying the stereotype that the mechanical field is more suitable for men, one ambitious woman has gone deeper into the field. Angelique Pienaar has become the first woman in Limpopo to train as an Automotive Machinist, which she started in 2017.
Her training, she explains, includes taking care of engines and relative components of vehicles, troubleshooting vehicles with a focus on the car’s engine, and repairing specific components of the car engine or replacing parts.
“This training, she explains, has given me the opportunity to perform a variety of tasks on car engines, which I never imagined I would be able to do,” says Pienaar.
Pienaar has thus far completed level 2 in her training and is currently on level 3. She hopes to advance onto level 4 in 2019, which will see her fully qualified as an Automotive Machinist.
She explains that she has already been trained in cylinder head machining, corrodes, blocks and crane shafts. “Had anyone told me seven years ago that I would be working on car engines, I would have definitely ridiculed the idea” she says.
This, she explains, is because she studied commercial subjects in high school, with the aim of becoming an accountant. Upon completion of her Matric at Ben-Foster High School in 2011, Pienaar started work as a Front Desk Assistant at her parents’ workshop, Tzaneen Precision Motor Works.
It was her curiosity in what happens ‘behind the scenes’ that sparked an interest in the automotive field. “I used to go into the workshop a lot because I wanted to observe how work was carried out there,” she explains.
This interest caught her father’s attention, James Pienaar, who is a qualified Diesel Mechanic. He says that he noticed that Angelique was getting bored working at the front desk and he decided to give her an opportunity to explore mechanical work.
“Angelique has a ‘can do’ attitude, and she is always willing to learn new things. When she came to me asking questions and offering assistance in the workshop, I did not hesitate to let her give it a go,” he says.
Pienaar says that the fact her father and brother are qualified diesel mechanics has been motivation for her. “Seeing how resilient and dedicated they are in their work gives me the courage to ‘keep my eye on the ball’. My plan is to also qualify as a Diesel Mechanic in the future,” she adds.
She explains that she wishes to see more women explore the field of mechanics and not limit themselves to white collar jobs.
“Women have a lot to offer in this field, particularly due to our attention to detail, which gives us the ability to spot finer things which may otherwise ‘slip through the cracks’,” she says.
At the age of 25, Pienaar explains that her goal at the moment is to complete her training and qualify in 2019, so that she will be able to perform technical tasks such as assembling and renewing internal combustion engines and engine components according to manufacturer specifications.