Entrepreneurs encouraged

Dr Thabo Mokoena Chief Director: Integrated Economic Planning, DESTEA, Prof. Crispen Chipunza, Assistant Dean: Research Innovation and Engagement, Prof. Dennis Dzansi, HoD: Business Support Studies, Prof. Alfred Ngowi, Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Research, Innovation and Engagement, Prof. Larry Dwyer, PhD Visiting Research Professor, School of Business, University of Technology, Sydney, Prof. Tshedi Naong, Head of the Department: Business Management and Prof. Albert Strydom, Dean: Faculty of Management Sciences.

Education in innovation and entrepreneurship has become part of Universities of Technology with the aim of turning more graduates from job seekers to job creators. The Central University of Technology, Free State (CUT) constantly seeks to build an engaged, purposeful, innovative and entrepreneurial University of Technology, a university that takes a step further to contribute towards empowering its graduates to help develop the city and the region.

From 3 to 5 April 2019, the Centre for Enterprise and Entrepreneurship Studies in the Faculty of Management Sciences hosted the Second International Conference on Entrepreneurship Development under the theme: Sustainable Entrepreneurship Development for the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

The purpose of the conference was to support the research agenda in entrepreneurship in the central region, promote entrepreneurship and internationalisation within CUT and promote the institution and its participation in the Fourth Industrial Revolution. The conference also aims to bring together academics, researchers and professionals to exchange and share their experiences and research results on all aspects of entrepreneurship and development for the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

The keynote speaker, Prof. Larry Dwyer, PhD Visiting Research Professor, School of Business, University of Technology, Sydney; Adjunct Professor in the Faculty of Economics, University of Ljubljana and Griffith Institute for Tourism at Griffith University, based his presentation on the role of social entrepreneurship in tourism planning.

“Entrepreneurship plays a critical role in tourism development. Entrepreneurs identify opportunities for tourism development, take risks in the phase of uncertainty, open new markets, new product development and innovation. All these activities are part of an entrepreneurial approach to tourism operation and tourism development.”

Prof. Keolebogile Shirley Motaung, Biomedical Scientist and Assistant Dean: Research, Innovation and Engagement of Science at the Tshwane University of Technology.

Prof. Keolebogile Shirley Motaung, another keynote speaker, encouraged postgraduate students to be job creators instead of job seekers and start businesses from their research work. Prof. Motaung is a Biomedical Scientist and Assistant Dean of Research, Innovation and Engagement in the Faculty of Science at the Tshwane University of Technology.

“As parents and academics, we need to change our mindset and start encouraging our children to get an education and become entrepreneurs. I wish someone would have told me to get a degree and create jobs, but now our parents encourage us to do otherwise. Becoming an entrepreneur is not a walk in the park, it requires hard work, vision, purpose, perseverance and passion.”