Fifty years is a long time and the School has seen thousands and thousands of students pass through its doorways… copious numbers of proud graduates who’ve gone on to do interesting things in their careers! So many syndicate groups that have worked through the night, so many friends made and businesses started!
We set up this wall to provide an opportunity for students, alumni, staff and friends of WBS to share their messages or memories of WBS. We hope you enjoy them.
If you would like to be part of our 50th celebrations and “write on the wall” we would love to hear from you. Whether you are a student or alumnus, a current or past staff member or lecturer – why not add your name, an anecdote and/or a photograph? Or even just a simple message.
Go to the ‘Share your Memory’ page and send your contribution.
Passing my PhD and graduating was a defining and memorable moment for me. A great sense of accomplishment, it was both the ‘Mama, I did it’ feeling and the ‘coming of age’ feeling which came with the sudden realisation that I could do that and more.
Looking back, two defining moments stand out for me. The first was enrolling for a Wits MBA as a result of the encouragement from my late dad. At the time it was very unusual for a medical doctor to do an MBA and I am indebted to the then dean, Prof Andy Andrews, for putting his faith in me and accepting me onto the course.
The day I gave birth to my son, who is five years old now, was the day my career focus changed. That day I realised that I not only need to talk the talk but also walk it in order to be the example that I want my son to follow.
Now an international consultant supporting sustainable democratisation, he is presently working with Aung San Suu Kyi to overcome the military legacy in Myanmar, but usually lives in Ottawa, Canada.
I was a second-year Bachelor student of economics, working as the public relations manager of the largest world student-run organisation for youth leadership development and international mobility, AIESEC.
Having always had a deep interest in science, I first qualified as a chemist, and thereafter at a later stage as an engineer. In order to broaden my capabilities, I started to lecture evening classes at the Vaal Triangle Technikon, now the Vaal Institute of Technology.
I used to try candy-coat things, but no longer: giving birth is less painful, less bloody and infinitely quicker than getting your first novel published. If you haven’t been smothered under the avalanche of “Dear Author, Thank you for your submission, but …” slips by the time you find a publisher, you and your manuscript will still have to face the pitiless glint of your editor’s scythe.
My career started at KEH VIII Hospital in Durban as a medical intern. It’s been an exciting journey! The first milestone was opening my medical practice in eMlazi, the second biggest township in the country.
Independent from a very young age, I had one life plan, ‘to own my own knives and forks’ and never to rely financially on anyone else. After two years of pursuing a business degree at university, I dropped out.
A defining moment in my career has been the realisation that my purpose as an entrepreneur is far reaching, not just to create jobs and wealth, but also be a leading example of charting a path others can follow, especially women.
WB Yeats said, “Things fall apart, the centre cannot hold,” which holds a harsh lesson for me. I took my radio broadcasting talent for granted. Because it came so easily, I began not to pay it attention and focused on what others considered important.
I recall the second day of my MBA when my first child was born and then while in China completing my final elective, I received the news of the birth of my second child and had to fly back immediately…. An amazing two years of learning and personal growth.
I have always believed in creating opportunities for myself. These opportunities do not only have to be self-serving. We should also strive towards improving our society in building a legacy that will outlive our generation.
As I continue on my journey, I have made self reflection my personal discipline – to remain true to my values as I seek to advance my unique strengths. On this path, I constantly remind myself of Nelson Mandela, who said that, “A winner is a dreamer who never gives up”.
Tony Norton, MD of Standard Merchant Bank addressed our MBA class. He talked about merchant banking and corporate finance- stock exchanges, raising capital, mergers, acquisitions …
The defining moment of my career happened when I was 12 years old. My father was the managing director of Glenton & Mitchell in the Eastern Cape, the company that launched Joko Tea during the first half of the 20th century.