Schools in three provinces benefit from Army input on military skills development

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Ahead of the 15 March closing date for Military Skills Development (MSD) applications for the 2025 intake, SA Army recruitment officers visited schools in the Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, and the Northern Cape provinces to inform those who finish school this year of the varied career opportunities available in the South African military.

The 2024 intake of just over two and a half thousand reported for training this year, starting with basics in January.

There has long been widespread interest in the MSD system as attested to by the large number of applications. A hundred and eighty thousand plus applications were received for this year’s intake with 2 634 making the grade.

Of the Pretoria recruitment information session in February, SA Army Corporate Communication Private Lekau Mamabolo wrote the “exercise sensitised grade 12 learners with the necessary information which will enable them to make informed decision when it comes to their career choices in the SA Army”. He further reported the “career drive outpaced expectations as more and more learners developed an interest in the world of Ratels, rifles and camouflage”.

MSD started in 2003 as an SANDF contribution to the National Development Plan (NDP) specifically as regards training young men and women. Initially there were two intakes of around five thousand a year dropping to the two thousand mark annually with a diminishing defence budget blamed.

Due to budget cuts, the Military Skills Development intake was only scheduled to take place every two years, with no fresh MSD recruits reporting for duty in 2023. (1 997 recruits reported for duty at the beginning of 2022).

It seems that recruitment is back to an annual basis, as the SANDF last month advertised applications for the 2025 intake. The application deadline is Friday 15 March.

“If you have not been contacted by 31 December 2024, kindly consider your application to be unsuccessful,” the SANDF stated.

MSD application forms can be viewed here.