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Service learning providers from the left are: Dr Liezel Du Plessis (Tourism
Management), Thelma Sekele (Marketing, Logistics and Sport Management), Maleepile
Annah Ramogale (Management and Entrepreneurship), Daisy Pheme (Marketing,
Logistics and Sport Management), Dr Uwe P Hermann (Tourism Management) and
Esabel Mathekgane (Office Management and Technology).
Six lecturers from the Tshwane University of Technology’s Faculty of Management Sciences recently participated in a service learning project at the Stanza Bopape Community Development Centre in Mamelodi. The project is aimed at providing a learning opportunity for start-up entrepreneurs and community cooperatives in the local community. 

Dr Liezel Du Plessis (Tourism Management), Thelma Sekele (Marketing, Logistics and Sport Management), Maleepile Annah Ramogale (Management and Entrepreneurship), Daisy Pheme (Marketing, Logistics and Sport Management), Dr Uwe P Hermann (Tourism Management) and Esabel Mathekgane (Office Management and Technology) delivered presentations on topics ranging from the basic principles of product differentiation, product diversification, to how to improve competitiveness and funding opportunities for small businesses.

Dr Hermann said the project was extremely rewarding since it provided a platform for local community development and aimed at empowering entrepreneurs to start and grow their own businesses.

“Unlike community service, service learning is a process where a local community benefits from a community initiative through the inclusion of purposeful civic learning. In this sphere, service learning not only promotes the learning and enhancement of lives within a community, but also allows the students and facilitators to learn to be part of society. It is therefore a mutually beneficial relationship for all involved. In contradiction, community service tends to be a one-directional relationship where only the community benefits, usually on a short to medium-term basis,” said Dr Hermann.

All six staff members are in the process of completing their Postgraduate Certificates in Higher Education at the University of Pretoria. One of the components of this programme is to promote service learning, which all six participants hope to promote in their own environments as well.

For more information on the Tshwane University of Technology, please contact Willa de Ruyter on tel: 012 382 5352 or send an email to deruyterw@tut.ac.za.