Imbokodo – Women in Leadership
Entrepreneur, philanthropist, author and UKZN alumna Dr Judy Dlamini delivered the keynote address at the Imbokodo Women in Leadership event on UKZN’s Westville campus.
Dlamini, a Medical doctor who also holds a PhD in business leadership, delivered a presentation titled: Living a Purposeful Life, during which she emphasised the importance of education and investing in one’s self. ‘You are enough, but you can be more and do more by investing in yourself in all spheres of your life,’ she said.
Dlamini, who is Chancellor of Wits University and an honorary doctorate recipient from UKZN, paid tribute to her family, including her husband and late parents.
She underscored having a positive attitude, “following your dream”, being a change enabler, working hard and having resilience. ‘Dreams come true if you stay focused, work hard and never give up,’ she said.
Dlamini cautioned against patriarchy supremacy, saying it is at the expense of everyone, including men.
Dr Hope Magidimisha, the first Black woman to be awarded a doctorate at UKZN in the Discipline of Town Planning, delivered a dynamic presentation on: How to hold on to your Sanity as a Female Leader.
Magidimisha spoke about her PhD journey and the challenges she faces as a Black woman, saying she had been undermined and soon realised she had become a threat to her male counterparts. ‘You think you are in charge of things, but you aren’t – but you don’t even know that you aren’t in charge!’ She said challenges included being set up for failure, being in a position of power … with no power and losing friends.
She encouraged the 71 women leaders in the audience to focus on their dreams and strengths. ‘Focus on your character – not your reputation. Don’t do things to please other people,’ she said. ‘Get a mentor – someone you can bounce your ideas off – someone you can relate to, engage with and whose ideas you respect.’
Deputy Vice-Chancellor: College of Agriculture, Engineering and Science Professor Albert Modi “unapologetically” paid tribute to the women in his life, including his grandmother, his wife, his colleagues and the women in his community. He stressed the importance of the ‘understanding of your true self,’ and said that was the most important insight anyone could have.
Programme Director Dr Joy Ndlovu said: ‘Patriarchy can either break you, or make you stronger.’
Director: Human Resources Mrs Busisiwe Ramabodu thanked everyone who contributed to the success of the event which was attended by academic and support staff at the University and school learners from Nazareth Primary School.
The occasion formed part of the inspirational and empowering series of lectures and events hosted by the Human Resources Division.
Words: Raylene Captain-Hasthibeer
Photographs: Albert Hirasen