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Bachelor of Commerce Honours Degrees for Six Graduates

April 18, 2017


Bachelor of Commerce Honours graduates who were awarded their degrees cum laude.

Six College of Law and Management Studies students received their Bachelor of Commerce Honours degree cum laude.

They are Ms Paulette Govindasamy, Ms Nazeerah Hussain, Ms Shivani Moodley, Ms Slindelo Msimango, Ms Rylla Pillay and Ms Aruna Seerpath.

Top of her class, Moodley said studying at UKZN challenged and enhanced her intellectual ability while opening up a variety of opportunities for her to network.

‘In my honours year I was selected to participate in the 10th Annual African, American and European Summer School. This was an interdisciplinary and intercultural study programme, during which I interacted with students from UKZN’s Pietermaritzburg and Westville campuses, Wits and Technische Universitat Chemnitz in Germany.

‘I also had the privilege of presenting a paper titled: “Personality as a Motivational Driver in Social Entrepreneurship" at the 2016 Business Management Conference.

‘I built strong relationships with my lecturers and mentors, and this is a highlight because these relationships have helped me grow and succeed in my academic career,’ said Moodley. 

She feels her graduation is a victory for millions of students who work hard regardless of the challenges and circumstances.

‘In my matric year I had great difficulty passing Maths and Physical Science, but I continued to do my best and eventually I passed with five distinctions and the highest in the grade for business studies plus the good Fellowship Award.

‘In my first year at University I failed quantitative maths dismally. I repeated the module the following year and scored 100% in the first test. At the end of it all, I walked away with my Honours degree cum laude.

‘By sharing my academic trials and tribulations I hope many students will be inspired and empowered to push forward regardless of the hurdles along the way. After all, anything is possible,’ said Moodley.

Seerpath, who did her Honours on Information Systems and Technology, said with the rapid changes in technology today, the degree would equip her with the necessary skills to prepare for the changes.

‘If you have a passion for coding or analysis these degrees are definitely for you. Yes, it may sometimes be challenging but when you are doing what you love and what you are good at, it’s all worth it,’ said Seerpath.

Currently employed by First National Bank as a Software Developer in the Digital Banking Business Unit, she intends studying further. ‘Education is very important and I believe that it is the only tool that can help reshape the world.’

She acknowledged her family and friend’s support for contributing to her success.

Pillay said being invited to be a member of the Golden Key Honours Society was a highlight of her studies. She also received several other certificates.

‘Any Commerce degree is difficult initially but as you go through the years it becomes easier. Human Resources is rewarding if you have a passion for people and helping others in a business context. I highly recommend it.’

Msimango says the University has given her the right tools she needs to achieve all her goals. She said during her studies at the University, she has experienced a number of things but most importantly she learnt to be true to herself and being independent as a young Black woman.

‘UKZN was the first place where I was able to introduce myself independently to the world, allowing myself to be whoever I want to be,’ said Msimango.

Her research was titled: “Productivity Challenges on Off-Campus Residence Students: Westville Campus”.

She said her biggest challenge was being away from her daughter who has also been her motivation to do well in her studies.

She is currently employed in the Department of Health’s Zululand District.

Hussain said her studies have exposed her to a ‘multitude of responsibilities, procedures, deadlines, diversity, communication challenges and leadership styles’.

She said functioning in these environments has equipped her with the knowledge and understanding of how to successfully manage people, high pressure situations and adherence to deadlines.

‘I am multi-talented and have a passion for Human Resources. I work systematically to achieve my goals successfully as an individual and I also possess the ability to thrive within teams or groups.’

In her motivation to other students, Hussain said: ‘We live in a society where people are trained from day one to instil mental limits on themselves which eventually cage them up into a box that they spend the rest of their lives trying to escape from.

'It makes them think they have to have somebody's authority or permission, when in reality, you don’t. The only person holding yourself back is you. You are capable of nothing less than greatness. The only person you should be competing with is yourself.’ 

She acknowledged her parents, friends and family who have been her pillars of strength, believed in her and motivated her into achieving her goals. 

Sithembile Shabangu

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