The Central University of Technology (CUT), Free State is working on achieving the goal of Vision 2020 to be the catalyst for entrepreneurs capable to contribute and stimulate the socio-economic growth in the region. In line with Vision 2020, the institution’s goal is to transform into an innovative and entrepreneurial hub that can spearhead socio-economic development.With the university strongly focusing on transforming entrepreneurship, the importance to be the catalyst for pioneering entrepreneurs was unpacked at the fifth Herman Mashaba Lecture of the CUT held on 16 September. Prof. Joan Lockyer, Director of Education, International Centre for Transformational Entrepreneurship (ICTE) at Coventry University delivered an insightful presentation on the importance of transformational entrepreneurship in the socio-economic development of South Africa. She explained how their university (Coventry University), interprets transformational entrepreneurship within their programmes and why they believe it is an important alternative perspective to the approach to developing entrepreneurship. Lockyer said innovative thinking that include technology, is important and valuable to advance socio-economic development of South Africa. Lockyer pointed out that the challenge facing the CUT is a disconnection between what is taught in institutions and what is happening in the real world where the demand on how to make it the socio-economy without failing. “By enterprise, we refer to the ways of thinking, of approaching a subject, and using what we have to transform our jobs or workplaces with the skills and attributes of an entrepreneur without starting a business. For us, transformation is about creating an ecosystem that enables socio-economic change to be productive.”Lockyer further indicated that South Africa is an efficiency-driven economy and people do not feel that they have the skills for entrepreneurship in the widest population. She said findings are that youth between 24 and 34 years are least entrepreneurially active as compared with the mature age group of 45 to 54. With this mindset among the youth, the CUT would be the best position to inspire the youth to seize on existing opportunity and providing the much-needed entrepreneurial skills.“Gender parity is improving in South Africa and that needs to be encouraged and supported. Our role is to make the impossible possible. “It’s never easy, simple and straight forward, because we live in a complex world and we talk to our students about metacognition. “We try to get them to think beyond the obvious solutions to problems and encourage them to not only think about getting a job after graduating. “By getting them to think in this metacognitive way, we are saying that education gives tools while experience gives knowledge of the world. We need to bring these two together and see where it takes us and use the metacognitive understanding to create space for ourselves,” said Lockyer. The annually held lecture was even attended by entrepreneurs from outside the Free State who came to take a leaf to thrive in the tough field.