UKZN’s Student Governance, Leadership and Development (SGLD) Unit recently held its first annual Leadership Alumni Colloquium, aimed at providing mentorship to the current UKZN student leadership. 

The colloquium, held on UKZN’s Westville campus, will create a platform for all willing student leaders to engage with alumni from the University, who themselves were former leaders and still hold various leadership roles.

Central SRC President, Mr Sanele Hlongwa, welcomed the former and current leadership and thanked the SGLD for creating a platform that will form the foundation for UKZN students to go off and be leaders in society. ‘I plead with other leaders to be open to mentoring and developing current UKZN leadership, engaging each other to move South Africa into greater heights,’ said Hlongwa.

Mr Ntuthuko Makhombothi, a former SRC President (Westville campus) acknowledged former leaders who contributed to the lifeline of UKZN for shaping the future for generations to come, and leaving footprints of the University in all spheres of society and the economy. He also reflected on the important role student leaders played in the successful merger between the University of Durban-Westville and the University of Natal to form UKZN and the solid foundation former SRC leaders laid for those that were to follow. ‘Leadership is a journey that does not end,’ said Makhombothi,

UKZN alumnus, Mr Mteto Nyati, who is Altron Group Chief Executive, thanked SGLD for inviting him to the first annual colloquium. His talk focused on ethical leadership and its four core values, namely fairness, integrity, excellence and family; while also highlighting the importance of morally “good” and “right” behaviour in leadership. Nyati said, ‘We have the capacity to change our situation and that of this country.’

Mrs Nobuntu Webster, Executive Director of African Pursuit & Avad Media and UKZN alumnus, challenged student leaders to be more innovative in finding solutions to economic development, asking them to use the knowledge gained in university to tackle social issues whilst building their own wealth and that of this countries. Webster said, ‘Our innovation needs to go back to who and what we are as Africans.’

Mr Vusumuzi “Fanle” Sibisi, President of UKZN Convocation said, ‘It is an honour and a privilege for us as the Convocation to interact with UKZN student leaders as we see you as part of our community.’ He focused on the importance of community engagement in responding to societal challenges, urging all clubs and societies to stake their claim in shaping the University. And also encouraged the University to take pride in the students it produces by reintegrating them back into the University’s workforce.

The colloquium ended off with a soccer match session, which saw UKZN Legends go head-to-head with Lamontville Golden Arrows Legends and UKZN Impi Squad square off against Lamontville Golden Arrows.

Words: Hlengiwe Precious Khwela 

Photograph: Andile Ndlovu