STUDENT ENTREPRENEURSHIP WEEK INSPIRES VUT STUDENTS TO BE INNOVATE AND BE PROBLEM SOLVERS
By: Qhawekazi Memani 06 October 2022
The Vaal University of Technology (VUT) recently hosted the fourth internal round of Student Entrepreneurship Week (SEW). The winners of this round will gear up to pitch their business ideas in a regional platform soon.
This year’s theme is #movetomarket which is informed by the importance of developing entrepreneurship despite socio-economic challenges.
The SEW primarily aims to promote and strengthen the entrepreneurial spirit amongst university students and staff across South Africa, while also raising awareness that employment is not a student’s only avenue to participation in the economy. This has led students to come up with innovative and creative ideas to solve problems in society and turn these ideas into action.
This is especially relevant, given the growing prevalence of youth unemployment and the number of students who do not complete their tertiary education studies. Institutions play a crucial role in supporting and equipping potential Studentpreneurs in taking practical steps into rebuilding South Africa by starting businesses that could be sustainable and scalable. The new VUT brand on its own speaks about developing and inspiring talent hence VUT supports Studentpreneurs. The University boasts of two organisations which are exceling in student entrepreneurship: the Enactus VUT Team and Technological Higher Education Network South Africa (THENSA).
Dr Sibusiso Mchunu, VUT Executive Director: Student Support Services (SSS) in his welcoming address stated that he is glad the students are participating in SEW. He said he expects students to think about how to convert skills into a business that will improve the economy of the country thus make them money. This, he said bearing in mind that South Africa and the rest of the continent are currently faced with so many challenges and both seek solutions.
In a program packed with useful nuggets for the young entrepreneurs, the VUT Enactus team presented its businesses. Other presentations were from different sectors including Financial and non-financial support from Small Enterprise Development Agency, Commercialisation, and IP, how to use Design Thinking process to generate business ideas etc.
Winners of the SEW
The following students pitched and won under the best business ideas:
1st place Jacob Thabang Mowale: R3500
2nd Letswalo Tebello Pigstay: R2500
3rd Mafhungo Mvhidzo MMI: R1000
A beautiful performance was rendered by Ubuhle’bukaZulu traditional group. VUT wishes SEW winners success in their endeavours.
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