The Durban University of Technology (DUT) Vice-Chancellor and Principal, Professor Thandwa Mthembu hosted a Farewell Dinner to honour the two Deputy Vice-Chancellors, Professor Sibusiso Moyo and Professor Nokuthula Sibiya who will be leaving the institution soon. This exquisite event was held at the Ritson Campus Hall on Thursday, 18 August 2022.
The Programme Director was Mr Alan Khan, Senior Director of Corporate Affairs at DUT who described Prof Moyo and Prof Sibiya as two remarkable colleagues, inspirational leaders and impressive academics. Amongst the dignitaries who graced the event were the Deputy Chair of DUT Council, Ms Brenda Ntombela, the DUT Vice-Chancellor and Principal, Professor Thandwa Mthembu, the DUT Deputy Vice-Chancellor for People and Operations, Dr Vuyo Mthethwa, Executive Deans, Executive Management Committee members, Ms Anne Linnee, Consul General of the United States of America, Ms Palesa Phili, Chief Executive Officer of the Durban Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Prince Africa Zulu from the Zulu royal family.
Delivering the welcome remarks, the DUT Vice-Chancellor and Principal, Prof Mthembu began by acknowledging the family and friends of Prof Moyo and Prof Sibiya who were in attendance. He also acknowledged Dr Mahmoud Youssef Baker of the Iqraa Trust.
“This is a bitter sweet occasion, but it’s sweeter than bitter. It’s sweeter because we are talking about two colleagues who between them have had about 40 years of sterling contribution to this university. So many of you here would have observed them grow to become researchers. To become managers, to become Deputy Vice-Chancellors that they are, which is one of the most senior positions you could find at a university. It’s sweet that you leave when you are still wanted by so many people to continue to be with us,” said Prof Mthembu.
He further said some might be asking why he did not say no to the resignation of both DVCs, Prof Moyo and Prof Sibiya.
“I’m going to answer the question. Well, the English people say what is good for the goose is good for the gander. I have told so many of you that I’ve been to eight universities in my 35 years of being at a university. At institutional level I cannot count how many people we have in this room who are academics, who are managers that have been recruited from other universities. So what is good for the goose is good for the gander,” noted Prof Mthembu as he encouraged Prof Moyo and Prof Sibiya to continue doing this right in the two universities that they will be joining.
Sharing the contributions by Prof Moyo to Research, Innovation and Engagement was Prof Keolebogile Motaung the Technology, Transfer and Innovation Director at DUT.
She indicated that Prof Moyo, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Research, Innovation and Engagement (RIE) has worked for the DUT for 22 years on a full-time basis.
“Prof Moyo who is also the Board Member: innobiz-DUT Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Co-Dean: Confucius Institute at DUT and Honorary Dean: School of Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Tianjin Vocational Institute in China joined DUT on a full time basis in 2001 as a lecturer in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics. Over the years until 2011, through her hard work and dedication Prof Moyo held various posts within the Department of Mathematics and Statistics including, Senior Lecturer, Associate Director, Associate Professor and Head of Department,” she said.
She further added that Prof Moyo was then appointed as the Acting Director for Research and Postgraduate Support (RPS) until 2013 where she was appointed at the Director for Research and Postgraduate Support. Prof Motaung relayed that while she was serving as the RPS Director, Prof Moyo was appointed to be the Acting Deputy Vice-Chancellor: RIE. She has been serving as the DVC: RIE from July 2017 to date. In 2019, while working as the DVC: RIE she was selected to be the Co-Dean of the Confucius Institute at DUT and had been serving in this position to date.
She also indicated that in November 2021, Prof Moyo was awarded the Entrepreneurial Development in Higher Education (EDHE) DVC Award at the EDHE 2021 Awards ceremony held in Johannesburg.
Apart from her various academic roles, Prof Moyo is presently an Associate Editor for the Journal of Higher Education Policy and Management published by Taylor and Francis and has also served as Guest Editor of the Mathematical Methods in the Applied Sciences Journal (published by John Wiley & Sons) and Journal of Engineering Mathematics (published by Springer). She was also one of the primary executive members of the South African chapter of the Organisation for Women in Science for the Developing World (OWSD).
“Prof Moyo has been instrumental in the founding of the innobiz, DUT’s Centre for Entrepreneurship and Innovation as her strategic interest is to mentor student entrepreneurs to find solutions to existing challenges in their communities,” she said.
Prof Motaung ended by revealing that as of 01 September 2022, Prof Moyo will resume her duties as Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Research and Postgraduate Support at Stellenbosch University.
The Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Teaching and Learning, Prof Sibiya joined DUT as a lecturer in the Department of Nursing in 2003, dedicating 19 years of her life to DUT. She obtained her doctoral qualification in 2009 and served as the Head of Department of Nursing from 2011 to 2017. She was appointed as the Executive Dean of Faculty of Health Sciences in 2017. Prof Sibiya is a full Professor with a National Research Foundation (NRF) rating and an author of more than 90 peer-reviewed publications, two books and 14 book chapters.
Highlighting Prof Sibiya’s contribution to Teaching and Learning was DUT’s Prof Oludayo Olugbara, Executive Dean of the Faculty of Accounting and Informatics.
He relayed that Prof Sibiya has made more than 50 keynote and other related presentations at national and international platforms. She has successfully supervised 26 Doctoral and 60 Master’s students. At the 2018 South African Women in Science Awards, the Department of Science and Technology recognised Prof Sibiya as the 2018 Distinguished Woman Scientist: Humanities and Social Sciences. She has also received several research awards from DUT that includes being the Top DUT Female Researcher of the Year, Top Researcher in the Faculty of Health Sciences. In 2019, she was awarded as the 2018 Senior Researcher of the Year. She was also awarded by the Forum of Professional Nurse Leadership as the 2019 Regional Nurse Leader.
“Prof Sibiya is the Principal Investigator of numerous collaborative projects in the Faculty of Health Sciences. She serves on several boards, including Peace Oasis International, Africa Journal of Nursing & Midwifery and Curationis. She serves as the Section Editor of Health SA Gesondheid. She is a member of the Accreditation Committee and Higher Education Quality Committee. She has served as the Chairperson of the Forum of University Nursing Deans of South Africa and Nursing Education Association,” he said.
Leading the heartfelt tributes to Prof Moyo was Prof Thomas Dobbelstein from VVürttemberg Cooperative State University, Honorary Research Professor and Board Member of the DUT Business School who joined the event online. He was followed by Mrs Lucille Webster, retired Director of Library Services at DUT and Professor Nqabomzi Gawe, former Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Institutional Support at DUT.
Meanwhile the profound tributes to Prof Sibiya were conducted by Prof Gugu Mchunu, Executive Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences at DUT and Dr Lavern Samuels Director: International Education and Partnership at DUT.
Sharing their journey at DUT, both Prof Moyo and Prof Sibiya poured their hearts out, expressing their gratitude to the DUT community for the love and support over the years. Prof Moyo thanked in particular Prof Gawe for playing the motherly role to her when she joined DUT, which meant a lot to her as she was missing her mother who was in Zambia.
Wishing them success and good fortune in the years to come was Dr Maditsane Nkonoane, DUT Registrar who conducted a toast to both Prof Moyo and Prof Sibiya.
Delivering the vote of thanks, the newly appointed DUT Deputy Vice-Chancellor: People and Operations expressed her sadness in not getting a chance to serve along them but wished them well on their journeys.
Prof Moyo and Prof Sibiya have both left ‘big shoes to be filled’ as they have worked with such immense passion and dedication over the years, flying the DUT flag high.
Pictured: DUT Vice-Chancellor and Principal, Prof Thandwa Mthembu with the Deputy Vice-Chancellors, Prof Sibusiso Moyo and Prof Nokuthula Sibiya at their Farewell Dinner.