MTN launches second Women in ICT – Partnership for Change Awards

 

Mapula Bodibe, Executive for the Consumer Business Unit at MTN SA, and Mark Harris, Group CEO of Kagiso Media

MTN yesterday opened nominations for the second edition of the Women in ICT Awards in partnership with Kagiso Media and ITWeb Brainstorm.

This initiative seeks to accelerate women’s participation in the ICT sector by celebrating and rewarding women professionals who have made a significant contribution to the growth and development of the ICT sector. In doing so, this initiative hopes to attract girl children and young aspirant female professionals to consider a profession in the industry and enhance the industry’s employer value proposition.

MTN is inviting the industry to nominate women working in the sector for the Awards in several categories. Nominations can be made at https://www.mtn.co.za/womeninict – nominations close on 4 August.

Nominees will be evaluated in the following categories:

Leadership Recognition Award: recognises senior female executives in the ICT sector whose proven depth of experience in leading change, influencing business outcomes and leading teams has impacted positively on the organisations they lead.

Innovator Recognition Award: recognises women who have introduced new methods, ideas, or products that are contributing in one way or the other to the delivery of a bold, new, digital world.

SME Recognition Award: recognises wholly-owned, women-run enterprises that are viable businesses which are making inroads in the ICT sector, and will be extended to internal employees who also run businesses on the side, using ICT to enable their businesses.

Graduate Award (High Schools): recognises a top ICT graduate from a high school who finished top of their class. The award is open to females who graduated in the immediate year preceding the awards ceremony.  

Graduate Award (Tertiary): recognises a top ICT graduate from a tertiary institution who finished top of their class. The award is open to females who graduated in the immediate year preceding the awards ceremony.  

Community Builder Recognition Award: recognises a woman who has made a considerable difference in her community through ICT, or use of an ICT tool to make a difference in the community.

Lifetime Achiever Recognition Award (Women Pioneer): recognises a woman who has longstanding success in the ICT industry, has demonstrated a remarkable entrepreneurial spirit, and has continually stayed ahead of the curve.

Excellence in ICT Journalism Award: this category seeks to recognise a journalist who has contributed immensely to creating a better understanding of the ICT industry through her reporting.

CEO’s Award: this award recognises an MTN employee that has made a difference within the organisation with the use of ICT and Technology.

Ministerial Recognition Award: this category gives the minister the opportunity to use their discretion to nominate a female ICT professional whose contribution has helped to bridge the digital divide and facilitate access to telecommunication services.

A new category has been introduced this year – The Public Choice Award. This category gives members of the public the opportunity to nominate an outstanding female professional in the ICT sector using an SMS platform. The dedicated SMS number will be unveiled in due course.

Speaking at the launch yesterday, Mapula Bodibe, Executive for the Consumer Business Unit at MTN SA, said that despite the strides being made by women professionals in ICT, a lot still needs to be done to increase the levels of women participation in the sector.

“The representation of and by women in the ICT is still negligible,” she commented. “Regardless of how bleak the statistics are, there are still pockets of remarkable women leaders in the ICT sector. I wish to appeal to these professionals to use their influence and positions to pave the way for other female professionals to thrive and prosper.”

 

Deshnie Govender

Deshnie Govender

Name: Deshnie Govender

Designation: Creative Director

Company: iVENT

What do you do every day? No two days are the same in digital but essentially I work with brands, agencies and influencers. From strategy and content creation to post production – engaging and authentic content is my key focus.

How did you get into the tech space? It found me! Starting out as a DJ I needed my music to be heard and social media was the easiest (and free) platform that allowed me to connect with others in seconds. When I realised social media and influencer management could become actual careers, I leveraged off my experience in music to start up my consultancy.

What was the best advice anyone ever gave you? Do what you love and never work a day in your life. I can honestly say that I love what I do and, notwithstanding stressful days, I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

What advice would you give someone wanting to get into the tech sector? Start with your own platforms. What do your social media accounts look like and what is the frequency of your content? Hands-on experience is the best way to start so I would suggest job shadowing or interning at a digital agency. Trust me, this is the environment that will show you how fast paced this industry can be.

What motivates you to get out of bed every day? My company, iVent. I am deeply passionate about what I do and never do anything half-heartedly. My work ethos dictates that my dedication and commitment – not just to my clients, influencers whom I collaborate with and projects that I run – are given 150% of my effort. There is no such thing as sleeping in for me!

What do you want to be when you grow up? I’d like to become a better version of me ☺

Expanding my offices in the UK and America, showing that market what our local influencer offering is like and collaborating on projects. We need to be the first to market, not the last option.

Blog: www.ivent.co.za
Linkedin: https://za.linkedin.com/in/deshnie

Sugeshni Subroyen

Sugeshni Subroyen

Name: Sugeshni Subroyen

Designation: Marketing Manager

Company: Mint Management Technologies (Group)

What do you do every day? I am responsible for running the marketing discipline within the Mint Group of Companies. Mint is a global Microsoft business provider who provides technology solutions to companies in the financial services industry. No two days are the same, our team of four (strategist, content marketer, events producer and social media marketer) crafts exciting messaging and campaigns to promote our brand globally.

We are a one-stop marketing shop that focuses on the full spectrum of marketing services and with our recent expansion to USA and Africa, we now have exposure to marketing to different cultures and expectations.

How did you get into the tech space? I was always in the financial services sector and when the opportunity came about to join one of the largest technology giants in the country, I grabbed the opportunity to be part of the EOH Group. I worked at the Head Office in Bedfordview as part of the Corporate Marketing team. With an inspiring and revolutionary leader like Asher Bohbot, who could not be passionate about technology?

What was the best advice anyone ever gave you? Always give your “all” in everything you do!

What advice would you given someone wanting to get into the tech sector? Tech is the way to go! According to Satya Nadella, we are in the 4th industrial revolution, Digital Transformation. If you are not part of this revolution, I am afraid you will be left behind!

What motivates you to get out of bed every day? I am passionate about marketing and the impact it has on the success of business. Everyone is a marketer in some shape or form and we are marketing ourselves daily without even noticing. Personal brands extend to professional brands. I love what I do and the motivation comes when people recognise the worth of marketing in the grand scheme of things!

Who do you want to be when you grow up? I want to be someone that can leave a legacy and make a difference so that my girls are proud of their mom and her accomplishments. I want to give back to my community and inspire young girls to be a success in everything they set their hearts on. Success is not determined by the position you hold or the car you drive but is rather the determination and eagerness you put in to any goal you set yourself, whether it is the best cake baker you can be or teacher or developer or UX designer!

Twitter: @ssubroyen
Google+: Sugeshni Subroyen
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/sugeshnisubroyen

Wits Navigator Challenge – entry deadline extended

WITS NAVIGATOR CHALLENGE 

Wits University’s Disability Rights Unit (DRU) assists over 1000 students and staff each year. Almost a third of these are physically or visually impaired. While Wits University’s campuses meet very high standards of accessibility for those with disabilities, it remains difficult for some disabled students to navigate around Wits.

The Wits Campus Personal Navigator Challenge aims to develop innovative systems that will increase the independence of students with visual and physical disabilities by providing them with a “personal navigator” around Wits’ vast campuses. The system should be able to safely guide a visually impaired or a physically impaired student from one location to another by using predefined safe accessible routes.

The system could be a simple standalone device that attaches to a walking cane or wheelchair or be a wearable device (e.g. wristband). This unique navigation system may work independently or in conjunction with relevant existing and/or future systems (software, apps, maps, etc.) to provide visual/audible directions and information to the student. To do this the proposed system might use multiple sensors installed at key points on campus which will provide location information and alerts to the base unit installed on a walking cane/ wheelchair/wearable device.

The aim of the Challenge is to assist successful entrants in turning a great idea into a viable tech startup. The top 10 ideas will have an opportunity to work in Wits University’s new startup incubator in the Tshimologong Digital Innovation Precinct in Braamfontein. The winner of the Challenge will spend 4 weeks working in a partner incubator in Canada, USA, Netherlands, UK or India.

The Challenge is open to all – not only Wits Students – and is being run by the Joburg Centre for Software Engineering (JCSE) with sponsorship from the Carl and Emily Fuchs Foundation.

CLOSING DATE FOR ENTRIES: 24th MARCH 2017

SUBMIT APPLICATION

Click here for more detailed information on the event.

WomeninTech: A question of changing perceptions

EMC systems engineer Jeanette Marutle joined the company in 2010 with no technology experience. A nine-week bootcamp, two years’ of mentoring and training and four years’ on the job and she’s working with the local sales team to provide high-end technology solutions to meet customers’ business needs.

“It’s been an exciting journey,” she says. “I didn’t want to be in tech, tech found me.”

Marutle studied economics, mathematics and computational mathematics and wanted to go into the economics side of it, but ended up in the computational space. “People who meet me now versus six years’ ago can see I’ve changed. I work with customers who’ve been in IT for 20, 30 years, and helping them and convincing them that I can add value to them has given me confidence.”

IT is a constantly changing sector, so you’re always learning, she says. “I’ve gotten to a point where I tell myself that I don’t need to know everything, I need to know enough and I need to know who to ask about the things I don’t know.”

View the full interview with Jeanette Marutle:

Women in tech on film…

We made a video! It’s part retrospective of the last #WomeninTechZA networking event and part invite (to men & women in tech) to the next at Fak’ugesi. With thanks to sponsor Business Connexion for all the support! 🙂

Get your tickets for Monday’s event with Debbie Rogers from Praekelt & Business Connexion’s Grace Dipale here: https://www.quicket.co.za/events/7372-womenintechza-networking-event/

https://youtu.be/TF-L3sXYzss

 

 

Jennifer Bezuidenhout

Name: Jennifer Bezuidenhout

Jennifer Bezuidenhout

Jennifer Bezuidenhout

Designation: Technical Director / Co-founder

Company: Viga Interactive, Taggo, Boulot

What do you do every day? I hustle. My days vary considerably, some days I’m swamped with admin and strategy meetings, some days I’m in back to back usability tests, other days I just code or create architecture, but every day I manage a team and client’s projects.

How did you get into the tech space? I started my career in the graphic design industry. Even while studying I wasn’t convinced of this weird exotic thing called coding, but one day I was asked to develop a website instead of just designing it, and so I started coding. I started my first registered company at 25, unfortunately it failed just over a year later. The failure of my first business resulted in a knock to my confidence, from which it took a while to recover from. When I started my next company, however, I was a lot more knowledgeable, stronger and wiser.

What was the best advice anyone ever gave you? Stay humble. As entrepreneurs we have to be confident, sometimes even arrogant, so it is difficult to remain humble all the time. When I succeed in staying humble it keeps me honest, grateful, and makes me a better listener. All of which tends to come in handy in the big bad world of business.

What advice would you given someone wanting to get into the tech sector? Never stop learning. Things move fast in the tech space and you need to stay up to date and relevant, when it comes to new technology and trends.

Another essential piece of advice I would give is to create rock solid specification documents. Because there are always issues around communication, a good spec can avoid misunderstandings.

What motivates you to get out of bed everyday? The possibility of a game changer. Every day I’m excited about the prospects that particular day can bring, you never know what’s around the corner and how it can make your business a success.

Who do you want to be when you grow up? I love being an entrepreneur. Yes, it is extremely difficult and sometimes I think I must be crazy. The reason I keep pushing is that someday when I’m all grown up I can look back and say it was all worth it, I helped build some really cool stuff.

Twitter: @VIGAInteractive
LinkedIn: https://za.linkedin.com/in/jennifer-bezuidenhout-26484235