One of the areas of transformation where MUT can play a broader role is in developing civic-minded graduates who leave the University to become agents of positive social change. More specifically, MUT aims to develop graduates who are critical, capable and pursue excellence in everything they do; graduates who are aware of their social responsibilities.
Khumbu Shelembe is one such alumnus who epitomises the transformation that MUT is committed to instilling in graduates. She is originally from Mthwalume on the south coast of KZN. She comes from an ordinary family and was not raised with a silver spoon in her mouth. She took it upon herself never to frown on opportunities, even outside her career choice. Although she graduated with a Marketing diploma in 2005, Shelembe struggled to find employment and finally took a job as a cashier in 2007 at Mobeni Service Station. Little did she know that putting hard work and passion into her work would secure her a bright future. Life has surely turned around for her as she is now the sole owner of Mobeni Service Station.
Shelembe is shaping and owning the future, as envisioned in MUT Strategy 2025. She says that her success did not come easily; it required her to work with determination, honesty, integrity and always to push beyond company expectations. After being promoted to work in bookkeeping in the supply chain department in 2007, after just six months of employment, she continued with further development trainings and completed the Caltex Retailer Courses in 2011. Having grasped the business, Shelembe took a chance and applied for special funding from Astron Energy, the company that owns the Caltex licence, to enable her to own the business after the previous owner presented the opportunity to her.
She encourages graduates to make the most of their time at work in creating a future they can look back and be proud of. An average person would normally spend 90 000 hours at work over a lifetime. Shelembe advises graduates to be on a mission to ensure that these hours become more engaging, fulfilling, fun and ultimately, help their team to reach their full potential at work.
She is grateful for the opportunity to study at MUT. Her happiest moment was when her parents attended her graduation at MUT’s Seme Hall. She had earnestly worked towards making her parents proud, and that was a moment she will cherish for a long time.
Shelembe is living her dream. She urges graduates to take any opportunity that comes their way regardless of how small it might look, and she hopes they will learn not to have pride. Whenever they get a chance, they must work hard even when it’s not their career choice because the world will respond to what they put in. The result might be what they never even dreamt of.