Student society wins at annual awards

2018-10-31 06:02
BWA Student Chapter won the Best New Society Award at the 2018 Nelson Mandela University Society Merit Awards on October 25.Photo:SUPPLIED

BWA Student Chapter won the Best New Society Award at the 2018 Nelson Mandela University Society Merit Awards on October 25.Photo:SUPPLIED

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THE Businesswomen’s Association Student Chapter ended their first year as a society on a high note last Thursday, October 25, when they won the Best New Society award at the 2018 Nelson Mandela University Society Merit Awards.

The Businesswomen’s Association (BWA) is the voice of women in South Africa. With more than 37 years in existence, the organisation has grown in stature and has become a credible and well-respected non-profit organisation for professional and business women in the country.

The student chapter was formed in 2017 in order to empower and develop young women leaders at tertiary institutions across South Africa.

It currently exists at Wits University, University of Cape Town, University of Pretoria and NMU with more than 1 200 members and a combined reach of 160 000 students.

Next year the BWA Student Chapter will be expanding into the University of Limpopo, the University of Fort Hare, University of the Free State and the Northern Cape.

“The student chapter is committed to supporting the growth and development of all young women at tertiary institutions and to build leaders who will advocate for the rights of all young women through skills development programmes, mentorship and leadership programmes,” said BWA Student Chapter founding chairperson, Mikaela Oosthuizen.

“The BWA Student Chapter is able to up-skill young women in order to encourage entrepreneurship among young women and to facilitate the economic inclusion of young women.”

Oosthuizen said they won the award based on the fact that they have more than 200 members and had hosted numerous successful events.

One of these was “Feminist Fight Club”, which provided tools to tackle the mental fight against patriarchy and taught students “combat moves” on how to fight sexism in the workplace.

Heather Dutton, chairperson of BWA Port Elizabeth, said, “The student chapter is part of the BWA vision to equip the upcoming generation of women in business. We aim to see more women heading companies and excelling in their corporate roles and that has to start from the ground up in equipping them as young adults.”

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