ONE Day Leader winner, Lesley Masibi, was elected the new president of Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) alongside the newly elected executive committee on Monday.
“In essence I see this position as an opportunity to have a positive impact in the lives of many, irrespective of how minute, and it’s an opportunity to contribute, as part of a collective, towards helping others become better people who can contribute towards making our nation a better place to live in,” says Masibi.
Masibi recently won the One Day Leader reality TV competition in which six potential youth leaders compete for the opportunity to effect change and gain experience in positions of leadership with an internship in the offices of the National Youth Development Agency chairperson and the Presidency.
SIFE’s goals are to develop students to become future leaders who will in turn empower their own communities.
The new executives plan to embark on new projects, collaborate with different faculties on campus as well as companies in the coming year.
“The organisation is not only for those students doing BCom degrees, but everybody else who would like to do a bit of community work with an entrepreneur leg to it,” says Ngobeni.
Masibi says their vision is also to improve SIFE’s relations with the university, the private sector and civil society because they are essential to the organisation’s success.
Nkosi says, “In my new role, I hope to introduce more entrepreneurship seminars for all students on campus. SIFE would like to host speakers with a keen interest in community development and empowerment.”
Wits came fifth at this year’s national competition held at Emperors Palace in Kempton Park. Teams from numerous tertiary institutions presented their projects to panels of business executives from various companies. The University of KwaZulu-Natal won and will represent South Africa at the SIFE World Cup in October.
The Wits Students In Free Enterprise (SIFE) team finished fifth place at the National Competition held earlier this month. The University of Kwa-zulu Natal won the competition and will be representing South Africa at the SIFE World Cup.
The teams are challenged to develop community outreach projects that reach SIFE’s educational topics such as market economics, entrepreneurship and business ethics.
SIFE teams from the country present the results of their outreach projects to determine which teams made the most impact on their communities.
Twenty-six teams participate on the first round, in four leagues. Two teams from the four leagues advance to the semi-finals and finally four teams at the finals. An awards ceremony is held at the end of the two day event.
Wits SIFE President Neilwe Mashigo says, “We were really disappointed after the Thematic awards ceremony on the first day, when Wits only walked away with one trophy. The teams that often win the most trophies go to the second round, but we were shocked to hear that we had made it to the semi-finals.”
In the first round the Wits team competed with Cape Peninsula University of Technology, Mangosuthu University of Technology, Rhodes University; Tsiba education, University of Zululand and University of Limpopo.
“I am very proud of the team’s achievement and we will be starting with new projects in the coming weeks,” says Wits SIFE Faculty Advisor, Nicky Lowe.
The team presented some of their projects, namely: ‘Fit for life, Fit for Work’, a youth training scheme that combines life coping skills with work preparedness; ‘XenoSIFE’ is a project which seeks to help in building social cohesion and intergrate foreign nationals who are legally in the country, by devising a means for them to work together with locals in creating job opportunities.
The presentations are judged by leading business executives from companies like Harmony Gold, HSBC Africa, Nedbank, and Softline, to name a few. The national champion then goes to compete at the SIFE World Cup.
Thirty-nine SIFE teams are expected to participate in this year’s international competition in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.