Project Coordinator at Goodbye Malaria, a social benefit organization founded by Nando's and Dalberg Global Development Advisors, aimed at controlling malaria in Africa.
How did you obtain your current position?
Since graduating from UCT, I have obtained both my jobs through serendipitous conversations. I undertook my Masters through a Mandela-Rhodes Scholarship, and I met my first employer at one of the scholar workshops where he was a speaker. I met my second employer at a seminar where he was a guest speaker. We discussed education and leadership at length, and the discussion evolved into a job offer at my current place of work.
In what way does your qualification relate to your work, whether directly or indirectly?
My qualifications do not directly relate to my work. In varsity I was a researcher, and the work placed emphasis on theoretical, lab-based skills. In my current job, the work is highly entrepreneurial and strongly dependent on interpersonal skills and critical thinking.
What are the key skills that have contributed to your success thus far?
My UCT degree prepared me for my career by developing my analytical thinking abilities. Additionally, I believe a willingness to learn, enthusiasm, and a strong work ethic also contribute to success.
What are your day-to-day activities?
Because I work in an entrepreneurial environment, my activities vary greatly from day to day.
What are the best and most challenging parts of your job?
The best parts are the challenges: thinking about big concepts; discussing ideas that could impact others at a continental level; being part of something innovative.
About your time at UCT:
What other student or community-based activities did you participate in during your studies?
I was an active member of Kolbe House Chaplaincy where I started up a theology discussion group. In addition, I was the vice president of Students for Life and an executive member of the SHAWCO Paediatrics Committee.
Advice to current students:
How best should students use their time at university to give themselves a competitive edge in your field?
Keep curious; get involved in projects and activities beyond your degree; take advantage of being surrounded by excited, high potential individuals at university; form networks; have fun!
Do you have any advice for a new graduate entering the world of work?
Be humble; stay open to correction and learning; and recognize that no matter how intelligent you may be, interpersonal skills and integrity are equally important.
In retrospect, what advice can you give to students about how to approach their own career development journeys?
Approach career development with an open mind and an understanding that a career doesn't have to be a straight path; it can be a surprising and highly individualized journey.