MUT Vice-Chancellor hosts ‘Thank You Lunch’ for ConvExco and IA

Professor Marcus Ramogale, seated, fourth from left, with IA staff, ConvExco members, and MUT staff

Professor Marcus, MUT Acting Vice-Chancellor and Principal, Professor Marcus Ramogale hosted a ‘Thank-You Lunch’ for the Convocation Executive and IA team on 27 October 2023 at the VC’s Dinning Hall to express his appreciation for the work that led to R12 million in pledges received during the Alumni Fundraising Dinner (AFD) that took place in Durban’s Oyster Box Hotel on 20 October 2023. Professor Ramogale said the event was worth celebrating with the pomp that it deserved, to send a strong message to the public, and leave a long-lasting impression.

Professor Ramogale said: “I want to thank this division for what it has done. I was pleasantly surprised. Things are now beginning to change. The decision to have this division is working. They need to raise R100 million per annum.  For now, they have done 12 percent. I am keen to know where we stand.” From the Acting Vice-Chancellor and Principal’s speech, it could be noted that there was no better time than now to have a division that is specifically created to generate funds for the Institution, particularly given the financial situation in the government.

It was on this basis that Professor Ramogale also highlighted the need for higher education institutions to generate third-stream income because the “government is running out of money”. Professor Ramogale said that that was the only way universities should deal with the inevitable change that was coming. He said that the companies that did not adapt to the changes perished. But those that made the necessary changes, and adapted, survived, the Acting Vice-Chancellor said. Professor Ramogale said organisations had to consider change as permanent. “Some companies think change will be temporary.”

Professor Ramogale shone a spotlight on the government in general. “There is a lot of change in the country. The role of government is changing. We have had a welfare state that cannot be maintained. We have been made to believe the government will always be able to provide,” said Professor Ramogale. “The economy is not growing. The tax base is shrinking. Less people are paying tax; more people are not working. The Treasury is looking for unspent infrastructure funds.  DHET is under extreme pressure. This means MUT must adapt. We need to find avenues to generate the third-stream income. IA is going to be the most important division. We hope there will be a lot more work for this division,” said Professor Ramogale.

Dr Connie Israel, Executive Director, Institutional Advancement said, “we sold 150 seats. We have some good contacts. The CFO and the Registrar helped. The Chancellor took a leading role,” said Dr Israel. The University Chancellor, Sandile Zungu, pledged R10 million. Dr Israel said that they were excited by some massive pledges, and that some pledges had already been honoured.