Dr Matete Madiba, Director of Student Affairs at the University of Pretoria, tells us a little more about the woman behind the title.
Tell us about your educational qualifications.
I hold a BA (Paed), BEd, BA Hons, MA and PhD
What does your role at UP entail?
Apart from being Director Student Affairs, I also chair the Institutional Transformation Committee.
Do you come from an academic family?
Both of my parents were teachers and they placed a lot of value on education. They did not go to university, but they worked hard to make sure that me and my sister got university degrees. I then made sure that all my children had the same opportunities, if not better. Now, all of us in my family are UP alumni – each one of us has at least one degree from UP.
What are your aspirations at UP?
UP should be a place where everyone feels at home – the University should provide ample opportunities for holistic student success and a conducive environment in which staff can offer their best contribution to make UP the best university.
What are some of the challenges of your job?
Working directly with students across all faculties is challenging, yet so fulfilling.
What do you consider to be a memorable highlight in your career?
Each time I see a student who has faced huge challenges complete their degree.
Is it difficult managing a career and a family?
It is challenging, but it gets better when your children are grown up and almost independent.
What are some of the barriers to women assuming leadership roles in the workplace?
The gender gap is still real and we should put in every effort to work towards gender parity.
What advice would you give to women today?
Women should continue to push boundaries to be sure that the gender gap is closed.