Business Schools: Profile – University of Stellenbosch Business School

The University of Stellenbosch Business School (USB), the first ‘African-born’ school to be triple accredited, is also the first South African business school to offer its MBA in realtime online. What this means is that the physical classroom is transferred to anywhere in the world. Students want the option to pursue an MBA at a reputable business school where they can learn anywhere and not be held back due to their location or work related travel commitments, says USB MBA programme head Martin Butler. He says that advanced technology will ensure that students from around the world can attend classes via live streaming and web-cams either on their laptop or smart phone and join fellow students attending the physical face-to-face in-classroom tuition to participate, raise insights and questions and contribute to group assignments.


“The new technology offers a richer student experience where they don’t simply consume content but interact, co-create and take responsibility for their learning irrespective of their location. This interaction also offers students
a new advanced technology skill set which they can apply in their own careers,” he says. Butler adds that blended learning should not be confused with online learning, which has been successfully implemented over a number of years. “Online offers a platform where the student learns in isolation at their own pace, mostly watching a video where they have the option to review tuition sessions at their own convenience. “USB’s new offering is synchronous
whereby the community of learners, collaborate at the same time when attending the classroom session online.

Our students meet for live sessions, either physically or via video streaming technology, all at the same time. We
call this a ‘glocal’ classroom since it’s simultaneously global and local.” Butler says that the wonderful thing
about the business school is that lecturers learn from the students as much as they learn from the lecturers
and using technology to engage is no different. Prof Piet Naudé, USB director, says an MBA is after all these years still a good qualification, because it is an ‘interesting form of knowledge advancement’.
“We have people from history, drama, accounting and medical backgrounds in our MBA classes. The reason why it
is still a good qualification is probably because it is the best general management orientated degree available,” he
says. And with the new real-time online MBA offering from USB, even more people will be able to gain access to this sought-after degree.

*USB was recently ranked the top school for the fifth consecutive year in the 2016 Professional Management Review ( annual survey of accredited business schools offering MBA and MBL degrees in South Africa.

Business Schools: Profile – University of Stellenbosch Business School

Tasneem Motala: From MBA student to lecturer

 Eugine Yiga

AFTER a few years of working for oil and gas refineries in Durban, Tasneem Motala, a chemical engineering graduate, moved to Cape Town for a new petrochemical industry job. But the real fuel for her career came when she enrolled in an MBA at the University of Stellenbosch Business School (USB). “Engineering is technical and the undergraduate degree doesn’t give you much insight into how business works,” she says. “I wanted to get more exposure to business concepts and more exposure to different fields.” USB was the ideal choice for several reasons.

First, while other business schools insisted on a January intake, USB’s mid-year option meant that Motala could start when she was ready. Second, the Modular MBA, in which two years of classes are presented in nine blocks of one week each, provided the flexibility to continue her full-time work. Third, the International Study Module gave her a once-in-alifetime opportunity to spend a week attending lectures, meeting students, and visiting businesses in Paris. But the biggest benefit USB offered, and one of her main reasons for doing an MBA, was the personal and professional leadership development. Whereas other modules run over a block or two, the leadership module extends over the full duration of the MBA.


“You engage with the leadership faculty and have one-on-one sessions in which they look at the reflections
you’ve done on aspects of your life,” she says. “That emphasis on leadership and a personal touch is what attracted
me to USB.” Getting to reflect on the choices she’d made in her career led her to the realisation that she wasn’t doing what she wanted with her life. Indeed, when she first considered doing an MBA, she had a slight feeling that it might be time for a professional change. “As a child, I always said I wanted to be a teacher,” recalls Motala, who was born in Newcastle (in the KwaZuluNatal Midlands) and raised in Durban. “It was my biggest passion when I was growing up. And while that feeling of  wanting to share knowledge with others was still at the back of my mind, the reflection and journaling pushed it to the fore. That’s when I realised that lecturing might be a career for me.”

Upon completing her MBA, Motala, who had built strong networks with her classmates and among the faculty,
was invited to lecture in one of the programmes last July. A year later, she was appointed as a full-time senior lecturer in Operations Management at USB. She admits that it’s not easy to be on the other side of the lecture hall. But she loves the challenge of putting theoretical concepts into practical context with real-world examples, which is
something her students always appreciate. She also considers it an honour to work with the same professors and
lecturers she admired. “The MBA allows you to speak the language of someone from a different background,” she says. “So when you’re sitting around the boardroom table, you can understand what the finance director or the IT expert is saying. You’ve been introduced to the concepts, understand what their work involves, and can speak the same language at a higher level.

I think that’s the beauty of the MBA from USB. That’s what it gives you and that’s what it added to my life.”

Business Schools: Profile – University of KwaZulu-Natal

 Adriaan Viljoen

Sustainable business begins with local community development. Grow roots in your own environment, expand across South African soil and Africa becomes your hinterland. This conviction propelled the University of KwaZulu-Natal’s Graduate School of Business and Leadership of towards a learning institution of recognised excellence and purpose. Award
The annual survey of Accredited Business Schools ranked the Graduate School of Business and Leadership (GSB&L) as among the top five business schools in South Africa, scoring an aggregated total of 7.66 out of 10. In the survey employers rated MBA graduates from accredited Business Schools in the workplace on 19 criteria including academic knowledge, application of knowledge in the workplace and entrepreneurial
skills, capacity and abilities. Dean and Head of the GSB&L prof. Theuns Pelser says the School differentiates itself from other SA business schools particularly by its local, regional and wider continental African focus


A Local Economic Development Partnership
In 2012 the School forged a partnership with the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs (DEDTEA) for a Regional and Local Economic Development Capacity Building Initiative (RLEDI). The GSB&L as academic partner offers postgraduate
programmes aimed at promoting local economic research and learning, creates a coordinated and integrated programme of teaching, learning and applied research in Local Economic Development and builds a professional network of empowered graduates. The Department, on the other hand, funds the entire programme.
Prof. Pelser says it has been a winwin initiative. The RLEDI Programme addresses locality-specific development
problems to overcome current gaps in KwaZulu-Natal capacity, and more broadly, in South Africa. Similarly it empowers students with environmentally relevant knowledge and skills.

A Global Award
No surprise this Partnership Project gained the GSB&L another prestigious award. In 2014 it was honoured with the International Partnership Network’s Global Best Award for the best Entrepreneurship and Enterprise Skills Partnership in Africa.

Academic Programmes
The GSB&L offers as flagship programme the Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree, as well as a Master of Commerce in Leadership Studies degree (MCom), a Postgraduate Diploma in Leadership and Management (PGDLM), Doctoral Business Studies, the Doctorate
in Business Administration (DBA) or Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Management Development Programmes (MDP) and an array of short courses and executive programmes.A Postgraduate Diploma in Entrepreneurship
empowers aspirant entrepreneurs and SME owners to manage new ventures effectively. The programme
is customised for working professionals in organisational leadership positions required to work in the dynamic and
complex environment of contemporary Africa and its transition agenda.

Other customised programmes grow leadership in the governmental arena, recently promoted managers
and even Leadership in “Turbulent Environments!” Academic learning by GSB&L’s 15 full time lecturers is complemented by practical input from a host of business executives and practitioners, ensuring
a blend of theory and practice in the student learning experience.

GSB&L is a Full Member of the Association of African Business Schools ( and a Member of the South African Business Schools
Association ( Its MBA Programme is internationally recognised and accredited by the Council on Higher Education of South Africa. It has students from several neighbouring states. GSB&L has gained a Three Palmes in the Eduniversal International rankings of business schools, a global higher
education ranking agency.

New Brooms …
Prof. Pelser was appointed Dean and Head of GSB&L as recently as April last year. Previously he was Director of the Graduate School of Business and Government Leadership at NorthWest University, Head of Regenesys Business School (RBS), and also had the benefit of private sector experience as Strategy Manager at Sasol. He holds a PhD in Strategic Management from the Potchefstroom University.

Business Schools: Profile – Milpark Business School

Milpark Business School MBA is ranked number one in the higher education private sector

Relevance; flexibility; tailored solutions; and flexible funding. A handful of the reasons why Milpark Business School offers the number one MBA in the higher education private sector as ranked by in its latest survey on Accredited Business Schools offering this degree in South Africa.


Ranking second overall and first in the private sector in the survey, Milpark Business School scooped a Golden Arrow Award for ranking second overall amongst all the business schools offering MBA in South
Africa. conducts a national survey on an annual basis of accredited public and private business schools offering MBA and MBL degrees in South Africa. Employers rated MBA graduates and students in their workplace on, among other things, academic knowledge, entrepreneurial skills, ethical business conduct, strategic management,
leadership skills and operational management. Dr Cobus Oosthuizen, Dean of Milpark Business School, says “The majority of employers still regard the MBA as a high-value degree and are eager to hire MBA graduates.”

Dr Oosthuizen further elaborates, “Our Distance Learning Online (DLO) MBA students experience constant learning
and support, possibly exceeding that of classroom-learning students, no matter how remotely they might be situated.
This kind of support ensures their 9-to-5 work lives are not interrupted and they remain an asset in their workspace.
It’s our understanding of the daily challenges our MBA students face that has allowed us to develop new
ways of learning that remove the barriers of traffic, location and low engagement.”

Challenging the norm and doing things differently, Milpark Education launched its Distance Learning Online (DLO)
MBA in January 2016, making it the first institution of higher learning in South Africa to do so, and further securing
its position as a leader in DLO. The DLO MBA guarantees high engagement and has been especially developed to
meet the demands of daily life, offering flexible funding and peer-to-peer learning. Milpark offers the first distancelearning MBA in the country with online synchronous and asynchronous contact for interactive support and one lecturer per cohort of 25 students to curate the learning journey effortlessly and seamlessly.

With the addition of DLO to its delivery, Milpark Education has provided students with the choice of classroom based-learning, or a quality interactive learning experience which is flexible enough for students to study at their own convenience, in a manner that is best for them, independently of place and time. Multiple instances of assessment will ensure student progress. Speaking at the DLO launch recently, Arthur Goldstuck, founder of World Wide Worx, noted that usage of the internet was growing rapidly and predicted that by the year 2020 in South Africa, of the 24.6m internet users, 18.5m would be involved in the digital economy. He further observed that “Everyone is connected, every teacher has access to every tool, and every student has access to all information. Yet, much of our education is still based on Business Schools: Profile – Milpark Business School nineteenth-century systems, styles and philosophies.” He praised Milpark Education for introducing initiatives that use digital tools to enhance learning. “This is a vision Milpark is embracing with its approach to Distance Learning Online. Technology is an enabler for learning and we need initiatives to use digital tools and resources to enhance the role of the teacher, rather than replace it. We are currently one of the few pioneers introducing digital tools to create a better learning experience,” says Dr Oosthuizen.

The benefits of completing an MBA through Milpark are not limited to Online only. Selecting the contact learning option for the MBA offers students the face-to-face interaction and immediacy some students prefer. With both Distance Learning Online or Contact Learning options, Milpark offers the MBA in a flexible manner while exposing students to the same subject areas and learning outcomes. The decision of which delivery mode to register for depends on the student’s lifestyle demands. Dr Oosthuizen concludes: “We offer a practical, multi-disciplinary MBA
programme to enhance the potential of present and future business leaders.

Our graduates are known to excel in the marketplace and this reflects positively on the status and credibility of our institution.”


Business Schools: Profile – Mancosa

Mancosa’s new Master of Public Administration Programme fills the skills GAP in the Public Sector

The official launch of MANCOSA’s Master of Public Administration Degree Programme took place on Friday 28th October at the Durban Campus. The programme is specifically designed to target professionals within the public sector and aims to address the skills gap the country is facing. Professor Enslin van Rooyen, welcomed the guests and highlighted that, “The Master of Public Administration Programme remains true to MANCOSA’s programme DNA and finds pertinence in more than once sense, such as:

• This programme is of international standards, yet retains local relevance to the extent that it is congruent with
the millennium development goals, African Union Development imperatives as BRICS’ development agenda;

• The programme design and content attributes, reflect uniqueness by catering for a new generation of students who are eager to extend the boundaries of intellectual discourse;

• The research component requires participants to embark on research commensurate with true masters’ level requirements in terms of methodology. This will enable the graduate to proceed to PhD studies in a seamless fashion.


MANCOSA also invited Fawzia Peer, Deputy Mayor of Etekweni Municipality and MEC of Economic Development,
Tourism & Environmental Affairs, Mr Sihle Zikalala, as key speakers for the event. The South African public sector is
short of Accounting and Financial skills and even more so in local government. The effects of the countrywide shortage of financial skills has a major effect on many organisations to meet their employment equity targets, as identified by Deputy Mayor, Fawzia Peer. MEC Sihle Zikalala said in his key note address; “The challenge of unemployment is not one that can be addressed solely by government. Equally, government cannot, act on its own to address the skills dearth afflicting our society, particularly the previously-marginalised.



It is due to this acknowledgement of the need for partnerships that we welcome the intervention made by MANCOSA in coming up with a Masters of Public Administration Degree Programme.” Applications for the programme are
now open and further information can be found on our website.

North West Province: Profile – North-West University

Meet the NWU family of excellence

The North-West University is an institution of academic excellence that continuously strives to be the best in all fields. The many accolades and prizes awarded to our staff are testament to this. From renowned alumni and groundbreaking researchers to highly respected specialists, the NWU has them all.

The NWU’s students, staff and stakeholders believe hard work pays off. The University was one of only two South African universities that managed to improve their rankings in the 2016 Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) World University Rankings. The QS rating system is an international standard identifying excellence and diversity among the world’s universities.

Top alumni excel in all fields

In recognising excellence, the University recently honoured its top alumni. This year’s awards ceremony included the
prestigious NWU Lifetime Achievement Award, and also recognised the NWU’s alumni who excelled in the international sports arena in 2016. The coveted Lifetime Achievement Award went to the former vice-chancellor
of the NWU, Dr Theuns Eloff, who completed his BJur Economics degree at the former Potchefstroom University
for Christian Higher Education in 1972.

It is the second time since 2013 that this prestigious award has been given in recognition of exceptional achievements. The first recipient was former State President Mr FW de Klerk. Other renowned alumni who received awards this year were Mr Kobie van Rensburg, musical virtuoso and head of Umculo Opera Incubator, Arts
and Culture Award; Ms Karen Meiring, director of Afrikaans channels at MNet and kykNET, Business Leadership
Award; Ms Yvonne Mfolo, executive head for public affairs at Kumba Iron Ore, Community Involvement Award;
Judge Frans Kgomo, Judge President of the Northern Cape, Public Service Award; Dr Tanya Robinson, phenomenal
researcher, Research Award;
Shanté Bukes, international jet ski racer, Sport Award, and Prof Llewellyn van Zyl, researcher and industrial psychologist, Young Alumnus Award. They follow in the footsteps of other great South Africans such as Prof Anis
Karodia, Deon Meyer, Judge Yvonne Mokgoro, Prof Pieter Stoker, Dr Bismark Tyobeka and Prof Elain Vlok, among

Caster Semenya and Sunette Viljoen, who made the podium at the 2016 Olympic Games, received NWU Ambassador
Awards at this year’s event. Willem Coertzen, Elroy Gelant, Terseus Liebenberg and Jean Verster received Ambassador certificates for excelling in their sport disciplines and as coaches.

Most productive researchers

The NWU’s researchers never rest on their laurels. They enthusiastically and actively engage in world-class research.
During this year’s NWU’s annual Excellence in Research Awards, the most productive researchers were honoured
for their excellent work. The NWU’s tourism and theology academics raked in the top honours at the awards. Tourism took the titles of Most Productive Researcher and Most Productive Junior Researcher for the
second and fourth time in a row, respectively, and Theology was named the Most Productive Research Entity.

Many outstanding staff members from other disciplines were also acknowledged for excellence in research, innovation, community involvement and creativity. Prof Dan Kgwadi, vice-chancellor of the NWU, thanked researchers for delivering excellence in research despite the challenges that the higher education sector has been going through for the past year. Prof Melville Saayman from the Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences
on the Potchefstroom Campus is the NWU’s Most Productive Researcher for 2016. Melville received this honour
last year too, demonstrating the consistent excellence of his research. He is the director of the research focus
area Tourism Research in Economic Environs and Society (TREES). Melville’s research has two distinctive focus areas. He does economic analysis of what tourists spend and also looks into the effective management of tourism
through policy development, tourism motivation, tourism planning and effective marketing. As for Prof Martinette Kruger, also from TREES, this was her fourth win as Most Productive Junior Researcher. Martinette’s research is aimed at identifying the most lucrative market segments at events and is especially useful for event organisers who want to understand the market better and expand it. She has been researching market segmentation for the past six years.

For the third consecutive year, the award for the Most Productive Research Entity went to the research unit Reformed Theology and the Development of the South African Society in the Faculty of Theology on the Potchefstroom Campus. The unit’s interest is debates that relate to the normative function of canonical Scripture and the contribution that Christian communities, through the Christian Church, make toward the development of society globally. The unit has succeeded in continuing to grow its national and international collaborations, increase postgraduate student numbers and raise its profile as a research entity that makes relevant scholarly contributions within the field. Sought after in the media Each year, the NWU also honours its researchers and academics for being
quoted in the media on their fields of expertise.

Prof Raymond Parsons of the NWU’s School of Business and Governance (NWU-SBG) was the individual most
quoted in the media in 2015. He was honoured on 15 November 2016 during the university’s annual Spokespersons
of the Year Awards. Prof Parsons is chairman of the NWUSBG Advisory Board. He has an impressive resume that includes being the deputy CEO of Business Unity South Africa (BUSA) until 2012 and subsequently a special policy advisor to that organisation until April 2014. Prof Parsons was the Overall Business Convenor at the National Economic Development and Labour Council (NEDLAC) until 2010. He is a recognised authority on the South African economy and its implications for the business community. He is also the leader of the Policy Uncertainty
Index (PUI) team at NWU. The PUI is a useful tool for measuring the effects of decision makers’ policies in South

Since its launch in February this year, three quarterly index reports have been published. Prof Parsons was mentioned in the media more than 300 times in 2015. The first runner-up in this category was Prof Andre Duvenhage of the focus area Social Transformation in the Faculty of Arts, followed by Mr Theo Venter
of the NWU School of Business and Governance. The awards are a way of recognising the outstanding efforts of various experts who keep the public educated and informed. In 2015, the NWU recorded a total of 8 958 media mentions. This is an increase of over 1 700 on the 2014 numbers. The 2015 articles had a total advertising equivalent value of R197 090 792 which is about R100 million higher than in the previous year. Of the media items that were analysed, 3 972 appeared in the print media, 775 in broadcast media and 4 211 in the online media.

With this calibre of alumni, researchers, experts and staff behind it, the NWU is ready to embrace the future and
looks forward to more academic and research excellence.