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50 Years of sculpting global leaders
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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.

What are your memories?

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.

WBS Memory Wall

Nomusa Mazonde

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. 

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Steuart Pennington, HDPM, 1975

In 1975 I was one of the first participants in what was called the HDPM (Higher Diploma in Personnel Management) programme at the Wits Business …

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John Lewsen, MBA, 1975

The MBA program was a pivotal learning experience in my life, and I still draw on insights and tools that I learned.

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Norman Chorn, MBA, 1981

I remember the day I finished my MBA…

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Maurice Goodman

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. 

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Thando Ntsinde

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.

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Mamello Mafisa, Fast Track Leadership Development, 2015

Reflecting on leadership…

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Francois Moreau

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.

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Shakeel Ebrahim, MBA, 2016

The MBA was truly a defining moment in my career!

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Nkocy Mdunge, Management Accounting, 2014

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Sanam Shree

The most defining moment in my career so far was the critical decision that I made to transition from the corporate environment to the family business founded by both my parents.

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Molefi Trinity Makola, PDM, 2014

Syndicate group teaching was just the best!

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Chaim Silberstein, MBA, 1981

Some of the best years of my life. We worked hard, had a lot of fun, and made lifelong friendships.

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George Cave, MAP, 2016

The MAP programme shaped my thinking and provided me with a platform to challenge myself. The programme also enhanced my business acumen and leadership competencies …

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Elena Gaffurini

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.

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Madelein Roos

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.

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Lauren Liebenberg

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.

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Alison Foote nee Sharp and Dugal Sharp, MBA, 1990

The first brother and sister pair to graduate with an MBA on the same day

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Euphemia Godspower Akpomiemie, MMFI, 2012

Wits Business School sculpted the leadership skills in me during my MMFI program. Still sculpting, as I complete my PhD this year.

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Wayne Holt, MBA, 2005

What an awesome adventure… changed my life forever!

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Judy Dlamini

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.

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Mathew Allan, PDM & MBA, 2013-2018

My abiding memories of Wits Business School were late nights, early mornings, the tough task of managing syndicates as well as the balancing of family, …

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Robert Johnson, MBA, 1972

We had a small class of 13. Herbert Sichel was the stand out Professor

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Zaheer Laher, PDBA, 2018

Being sculptured into a global leader!!!

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Thandiwe Peach, PDM, 2014-2016

My WBS story is one that will be forever fulfilling; it was full of goodness, headaches, hard work, and in the end strong corporate networks …

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Isaac Patsa, Master of Management, 2015

Wits Business School is an amazing place, you will be challenged beyond your wildest imagination. However, you will come out WBS a transformed and better …

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John Caesar Mwangi, MBA, 1994

I had arrived from Kenya at WBS on February 17th 1993 to join the full-time 1993-94 MBA class. As the first Kenyan student to enrol …

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Vuyisile Zondi

A defining moment in my career has been the ability to start a business and sustain its growth in a highly competitive market.

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Papi Lidovho, Case Competition, Tel Aviv, 2014

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GRAHAM GAULT, MBA, 1990

Awesome Course, good as post Graduate, and overall experience was great…….Sets you up well for future career I felt…

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Tracy Rushton, PDM HR, 1988-1989

We were the first class to complete this course part-time. A real challenge and motivated me to become a life long learner.

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Claire Beswick, HDPM, 1987

How fabulous to be treated like my opinions mattered and to be exposed to fascinating classroom discussion with a whole bunch of really sharp people. …

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Roy Raeburn, MBA, 1973

I was one of the early recipients of the of the new Wits Business School MBA programme. I found the whole executional and social interaction …

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Lebona Moleli, MBA, 1996-1998

The most challenging but rewarding 3 years of my life. The first time I studied whilst I had a full time job. I enjoyed the …

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Boas Chauke, MAP 2015, MBA 2016-2017

Years to be remembered!

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Dieter Nolte, MBA, 1977

At age 36, I was the oldest member of the 1976/77 full-time MBA class. What I lacked in youthful energy, I could make up with …

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Melinda van den Berg, MAP, EDP & PDBA, 1980

Five WBS qualifications are more powerful than one.

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Barbara Queally

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.

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Pavlo Phitidis

Late one Thursday night, as I walked past my library, an epiphany struck me. I realised, just then, in that moment, what the purpose of my life was.

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Affiong Williams

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.

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Thabo Mokwele

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.

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Zukiswa Kulu, NMP, 2012

I did the New Managers Programme from September to December 2012, and our communications lecturer was a guy called Ron. At the end of the …

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Ismail Lambat, MBA, 2010

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.

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Zanele Hlatshwayo

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.

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Kathy Lewis, MBA, 1987

“The MBA was indeed an occasion in my life!”   I remember Buzz, the resident cat, who often adopted interesting poses at the front of …

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Priya Rowjee

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”.

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Dr Rene Albertus, MBA, 2007

“All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players; They have their exits and their entrances, and one man in his …

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Jovana Korać

It is my fundamental belief that social entrepreneurship is the future of doing business. Shared value equates to shared growth – across industries and communities.

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Jack Hochfeld, MBA, 1975-76

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 …

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Deon Opperman

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. 

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