24 May 2017 Volume :5 Issue :27

UKZN Alumnus Selected to Serve on University Council

UKZN Alumnus Selected to Serve on University Council
UKZN Council member and entrepreneur, Mr Sammy Mashita.

Philanthropist, marathon road runner, successful entrepreneur and UKZN alumnus Mr Sammy Mashita has been appointed by the Minister of Higher Education and Training Mr Bonginkosi Blade Nzimande to serve on the University’s Council until 2020.

Mashita, who previously served on the Council as a Convocation Executive representative, has been actively engaged with the University since his student days, which he believes will stand him in good stead in his new appointment. ‘I earned my governance experience back in the days during my student government activism and later as a senior government bureaucrat. I now serve on various boards, including UKZN’s Council.’

He read for a BSoc degree in Politics and Economics and completed his Honours degree in Government Business and Ethics at the University a decade ago.

Mashita has fond memories of ‘repositioning’ the Pietermaritzburg campus which he says had been an underdog campus at the former University of Natal. ‘When I arrived, we were starting with the merger process.’

He served as a student leader as well as the KwaZulu-Natal Chairperson of SASCO. ‘The PMB campus became the centre of the University and went on to produce the highest number of Central SRC Presidents.’

Owner of the Be Sure Group, which he has modelled around Bidvest, his business includes 10 companies ranging from Be Sure Events to Be Sure Energy and Water and many others. While he is focused on building the brand, he has also developed the Be Sure Foundation which includes a Youth Development Programme.

He has made sizeable donations to the UKZN Alumni Bursary Fund to assist students who - similar to Mashita when he was a student - are financially needy. 

Mashita is quietly confidant the University will grow stronger, in the wake of the ‘Executive Management Committee constraints and the Medical School saga. I’m always optimistic about the capability of brand UKZN to stand the test of time.’

He says the secret to maintaining a good work/life balance is being ‘a great planner with a very understanding wife!’

Mashita will wear Team UKZN gear when he tackles this year’s Comrades Marathon. ‘I am running under the theme: “It takes all of you – Zinikele”,’ he said.

Raylene Captain-Hasthibeer

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