EDHE’s bumper programme for 2022 includes a new video campaign

24-03-22 USAf 0 comment

At the recent Executive Leadership Workshop of Universities South Africa’s Entrepreneurship Development in Higher Education (EDHE) programme, EDHE’s Project Manager, Ms Zana Boshoff, outlined their busy programme for 2022. 

EDHE is a partnership between the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) and Universities South Africa, which represents the 26 public universities in the country. Founded in 2016, EDHE aspires to develop entrepreneurial mindsets and capability in students, academics, and universities.  

Ms Boshoff (left) presented three types of activities:

  • entrepreneurship and ecosystem-focused activities such as the annual Lekgotla;
  • staff-focused activities such as the annual Kickoff and Train-the-Trainer workshop that took place over two days in February. The 2022 event was made even more special because 80% of participants in it were new EDHE members and 
  • student-focused activities such as the annual Entrepreneurship Intervarsity and the Student Entrepreneurship Week (SEW).

Don’t miss the Lekgotla

“We are inviting all of you to the Lekgotla to be hosted in Gqeberha by Nelson Mandela University. It’s going to be fantastic. And if you are an EDHE member, you get a free ticket to join us at the Lekgotla. We will be opening registrations later this year,” said Boshoff. The Lekgotla is from 18 to 22 July.

She said last year’s Lekgotla featured 63 speakers, panelists, and session chairs for over 35 sessions. There were 727 virtual attendees and 201 in-person, bringing it to a total of 928 people. Nine international countries participated, and all 26 universities were represented in some way, she said. “I am really hoping that we reach the 1000 mark again this year,” she said.

The 2022 video campaign

A new project for this year is the University Entrepreneurship Resource Tour and Video Campaign. EDHE has identified 10 case studies at 10 universities and will be making 10 videos to showcase what those universities are doing to promote entrepreneurship. 

“The point is, we want to tell your story. It’s going to be a fun video – a warm, accessible, fast-paced, promo, 10 minutes long,” said Boshoff. 

To that end, EDHE has appointed Ms Anne Williams, an experienced multi-camera TV director, producer, and consultant, as the Executive Producer. She will be visiting the 10 universities with a camera crew to document their stories and promote what is happening in terms of student entrepreneurship, resources, and support. 

“It will be amazing to capture those success stories,” Boshoff said. “It will be a fantastic opportunity for you to use on various platforms,” said Boshoff. “Hopefully, we will get more funding to feature the remaining 16 universities.” 

According to Ms Boshoff, this promotion will be linked to research. More specifically, it will be accompanied by a report on the resources that universities need to support student entrepreneurs so that universities can get feedback.

Presented in partnership with the British Council, this project will be followed up with a series of webinars about student entrepreneurship at seven UK universities. 

The Deputy Vice-Chancellor entrepreneurship award

Another project she referred to was the EDHE Deputy Vice-Chancellor (DVC) Award, presented to the university entrepreneurship champion at the annual intervarsity prize-giving ceremony. EDHE gives this award to recognise and encourage the support DVCs give to entrepreneurship. Staff and students are invited to nominate the DVC they consider to be most deserving. 

Boshoff said although the DVC Award attracted many nominations in 2021, the submissions did not include the requisite proof of exceptional institutional support. The EDHE Project Manager was mentioning this as a caution to the 2022 nominators, to also assemble a supporting portfolio to meet all requirements in this regard. 

EDHE events that have already happened this year 

She also mentioned the Student Woman Economic Empowerment (SWEEP) programme, EDHE’s new project launched at last year’s Lekgotla, under whose auspices the first empowerment workshop was held from January 24 to 27.  This jampacked event featured student entrepreneurs and businesswomen and women in industry. Ms Frances Zowa, who is also a Personal Assistant to Director: EDHE, is the contact person for everything related to SWEEP.

February saw completion of an economic activation workshop by EDHE’s stakeholder relations unit, as was the student entrepreneurship coordinators’ workshop, led by Mr Sandile Shabalala, EDHE’s Senior Student Engagement Officer. 

Finalists at the EDHE Entrepreneurship Intervarsity 2021 celebrate the culmination of the whole-year project at the award ceremony in November.

Also gone past is the launch of the EDHE Entrepreneurship Intervarsity 2022, which took place on 24 February. This is an annual highlight that identifies top student entrepreneurs at South African universities. Students first compete at the institutional level before various universities contest regionally, from where the identified finalists contend for the national EDHE Entrepreneurship Intervarsity Award. The overall winner walks away with prize money to the value of R100 000.

Some dates to diarise

EDHE Entrepreneurship Intervarsity entries – close on 3 April 
EDHE SWEEP webinar – 20 April
EDHE Student Entrepreneurship Week (SEW) launch – 18 August
EDHE Lekgotla 2022 – 18 to 22 July
EDHE Entrepreneurship Intervarsity 2022 National Finals and Awards – 17 and 18 November

Gillian Anstey is a contract writer for Universities South Africa