Women’s Month 2023: Student Advisor dedicated to uplifting VUT students and empowering their educational journeys
By: Qhawekazi Memani- 23 August 2023
Lerato Motloung holds the role of a student advisor within the Centre of Academic Development (CAD) Department at the Vaal University of Technology (VUT). Joining VUT in late 2021 as an Academic Advisor within the department’s Academic Advising unit, she has fully embraced her responsibilities – a remarkable journey characterized by dedication, personal growth, and a profound commitment to empowering and uplifting students in their pursuit of educational aspirations.
Lerato holds degrees from the VUT, University of the Free State (UFS) and the, University of South Africa (UNISA) totaling four qualifications. “I’m excited to be pursuing my fifth qualification, recognizing the immense potential education offers for transformation and growth,” she said.
She said she was pleased with the significant impact she has had on both the Golden Key International Honour Society and as a member of the JB Marks Alumni Education Trust Fund. “In the Golden Key Society, my contributions have transformed how members engage with academic content and collaborate on projects, particularly through research assistance and academic writing support. This has elevated members’ academic pursuits and intellectual growth, fostering lively discussions and knowledge sharing within the society’s online forums. As part of the JB Marks Alumni Education Trust Fund, the focus on nurturing young talent has inspired me to pursue excellence and contribute to the community’s betterment going forward,’’ shared.
A pivotal aspect of her contribution to women’s empowerment, stemming from her background in psychology and education, lies in cultivating a comprehensive approach to advising. “I recognize that academic achievement is inherently intertwined with personal development. I am determined to establish a secure and nurturing environment where young women can openly engage in conversations about their ambitions, worries, and aspirations,” she conveyed.
In addressing the theme for Women’s Month 2023, Lerato underlines the transformative power of education, emphasizing its potential to dismantle gender barriers and foster equality. Through tailored guidance and unwavering support, she has been instrumental in empowering young women to make informed decisions about their educational trajectories. From assisting them in navigating demanding coursework to aiding them in discovering their distinctive strengths and passions. Her role as an academic advisor transcends mere course selection; it centers on fostering self-assurance and belief. “I’ve been privileged to serve as a guiding beacon for countless students who have dared to dream big and strive to realize their utmost potential, “she said.
She further added, “Women’s Month holds a significant place in a nation where echoes of adversity and determination still resonate. This occasion extends beyond a mere date on the calendar; it signifies a reason for celebration and a rallying cry deeply intertwined with our country’s history and essence. Moreover, women’s empowerment to me is far more than a passing buzzword; it forms a guiding philosophy that shapes my interactions with every student.”
“It also serves as a poignant reminder that the journey toward gender parity is still ongoing. Irrespective of gender, a collective commitment to this endeavor is essential. I’ve come to recognize that gender equality constitutes a core human rights issue, impacting everyone through the lens of ‘Generation Equality,’ and it influences both men and women alike. This journey beckons upon men to stand as allies and advocates, standing shoulder to shoulder with women in the pursuit of a just and equitable society, “she concluded.