Newly launched ICT Alumni Chapter provides support network for graduates

by Nhlawulo Vision Chauke

22 June 2023

The Faculty of Information and Communication Technology (FoICT) welcomed the return of its Alumni for the official launch of the Faculty Alumni Chapter on 15 June 2023. The launch brought together about 200 graduates working in diverse areas of the industry, such as Computer Science, Computer Systems Engineering, Information Technology, Informatics and Multimedia Computing. The chapter aims to support the network of graduates as well as assist in advancing the University’s mission of making knowledge work and preparing future-ready graduates.

Executive Dean of the Faculty of ICT, Dr Etienne Van Wyk, addressing Alumni at the recent FoICT Alumni Chapter launch.

Since TUT is the only higher education institution in Southern Africa that has a dedicated Faculty of Information and Communication Technology, it puts the University in a unique position to specialise in several ICT areas. For this reason. the FoICT Alumni Chapter launch was even more special for ICT staff members, students, Alumni and corporates in the ICT sector. 

Dr Etienne Van Wyk, Executive Dean of the ICT Faculty, said the launch is a significant milestone in the history of the Faculty. 

“The launch of an Alumni Chapter is an important step in solidifying the Faculty’s commitment to excellence in the rapidly expanding ICT field. Our alumni are an integral part of our shared legacy. They embody the essence of our institution's values, academic excellence and commitment to continuous growth and innovation. Today we celebrate the formation of what we hope will become a vibrant and active alumni community,” he said.

“This chapter will serve as a platform for our esteemed alumni who have excelled in the ICT domain to come together, share their knowledge and experiences, as well as leaving a lasting impact on the industry and society,” he said.

He added that the collective wisdom, expertise and achievements of FoICT’s Alumni will inspire and motivate the next generation of ICT professionals - those students who are eagerly awaiting to step into these leaders’ shoes and make their own mark.

The Faculty’s prominent creative heads, such as Wonder Ndlovu, Head of Innovation at Mbula Research and Development; Lesley Ncube, Founder and CEO of Thatha; and Tshegofatso Manakana, Senior Software Engineer/Architect, were among the guests attending the launch.

Director of the Advancement and Partnerships Office, Dr Eric Pule, at the FoICT Alumni Chapter launch.

“As we embark on this exciting journey together, we should remember that the success of this chapter not only lies in the achievements of its individual members but in our collective ability to make a lasting impact on society,” he said.

He urged them to use their knowledge, skills and experience to bridge the digital divide, create opportunities and empower those who are yet to embark on their own ICT journey.

Dr Eric Pule, Director of the Advancement and Partnerships Office (APO), said the establishment of the ICT Alumni Chapter represents an important aspect of the University’s commitment to maintain active networking, partnerships and productive collaborative alliances between the University, its Alumni and the ICT community in general.

“The FoICT Alumni Chapter would thus provide a forum for continuous collaboration and engagement, as well as knowledge and skills sharing platforms. Alumni also have an ambassadorial role to play in representing their alma mater well at every level in industry and society.” 

He added that many universities globally depend on and survive through Alumni support, therefore TUT Alumni should also join hands to support TUT and contribute to its continued sustainability.

Since 2022, TUT’s Alumni Relations Office (ARO) has successfully launched three Faculty Alumni Chapters. The first was the Faculty of Arts and Design Alumni Chapter, followed by the Faculty of Engineering and the Built Environment. ARO plans to launch another two Alumni Chapters, the Faculty of Economics and Finance and the Faculty of Humanities Alumni Chapters, before the end of 2023. 

 From the left: Gontse Mokwena , TUT Convocation Treasurer; Wonder Ndlovu, Head of Innovation at Mbula Research and Development ; Tebogo Sako, ICT student ; Dr Etienne Van Wyk, Executive Dean of the Faculty of ICT; Shalate Davhana, Manager: Alumni Relations and Fundraising;  and Dr Eric Pule, Director of the Advancement and Partnerships Office.
Interaction between attendees of the Faculty of ICT Alumni Chapter launch during the Exhibition Walk-about presented by third-year ICT students at the Protea Hotel (Fire & Ice), Menlyn on 15 June 2023.

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