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CEI celebrates first graduation

CEI celebrates first graduation

UWC’s Centre for Entrepreneurship and Innovation was proud to graduate its first crop of Entrepreneurship Fellows.

The CEI has now introduced new entrepreneurs to participate and gain valuable experience through this exciting course.

The programme allows for peer-to peer learning and facilitation support amongst SMMEs, contributing to business knowledge, skills and personal development.

Participants are provided with unique opportunities and experiences that are not typically available to many entrepreneurs. They attend workshops, receive peer consulting, exchange and field service opportunities, and also have opportunities to connect and collaborate with other distinguished change makers in the development field aligned to their industry.

The class of 2014 comprised of a group of graduates who participated in the pilot Supplier Development Training Programme presented by UWC’s CEI, and sponsored by the Western Cape Government: Economic Development and Tourism.

CEI Director Charleen Duncan told the graduates that the day was a great celebration and that they should feel proud of completing the journey with the CEI and UWC.

UWC Finance Director Manie Regal said: “The Fellowship started as an incubation programme, but has transformed itself into a business support project where entrepreneurs can receive tried and tested advice from their peers.”

The Fellowship, he explained is an authentic engagement platform for small business owners to interact and learn from other fellows who have probably faced the same difficulty they are currently experiencing.

Regal noted that one lesson all entrepreneurs can learn from the Fees Must Fall campaign at UWC is that it is important to adapt to change within your business.

“If we want to survive in business, we must all learn to adapt to constant change – like UWC did during those tough times.”

Special guest speaker Sedick Jappie, Fouder of Superior Cabinet Doors, had inspiring words for the entrepreneurs.

“Entrepreneurship is an acquired life skill and your learning takes place every day,” he said.

“Success is something that does not happen overnight. Keep going, even through the challenges. When you burn your fingers once, you won’t make the same mistake easily again.”

The UWC Entrepreneurship Fellowship was launched in 2014 and has achieved tremendous success since then.

ABSA Bank has decided to jump onboard and will sponsor the course from 2016 to 2019. This will give many more entrepreneurs across the province the opportunity to improve their skills and self-empowerment.

For more information on the programme contact Wendy Mehl on 021 959 9549 or via email at wmehl@uwc.ac.za.

CEI celebrates first graduation

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