The second installment of the Coega Youth Leadership Academy (CYLA) training – launched late last year – will take place next week, from 24 June – in tandem with youth month celebrations and bringing a series of high level speakers to engage Eastern Cape students.
Among the presenters leading the programme talks are: leading academic Dr Frans Kekana, seasoned social entrepreneur Lebo Pule, and economists and CYLA project managers Njabulo Sithebe and Nomzamo Kolo.
This year’s programme will include students from four South African Universities and FET colleges from around the Eastern Cape as well as academics, social entrepreneurs and youth trainers. Forty students are expected to attend. Participants will come from Rhodes, Walter Sisulu, Fort Hare, and Nelson Mandela Metropolitan Universities, and Lovedale, King Hintsa and Port Elizabeth colleges.
The programme aims to provide young leaders with the robust life insight and in-depth content required to lead effectively in society. The theme for the five day programme is “Languages of Leadership”.
“The Coega Youth Leadership Academy (CYLA) is a unique program that teaches young people to make the world a better place. It does not only teach concepts but it introduces young people to those successful and innovative members of society,” said CDC corporate social investment manager Thandi Rayi, which sponsors the academy.
The students will attend leadership training sessions over the week and also complete various assessments.
“This program is also aimed at equipping young people with self-confidence to take up leadership positions and also as a mechanism to promote young people as drivers of social leadership. In that context, this programme is not just about individual self-development skills. It places social capital development alongside personal development,” said Sithebe.
The Coega Development Corporation (CDC) said the organisation was committed to this level of skills development as it supports youth leadership pipelines that connect young people to opportunity and influence. “Recognising that leadership is the everyday act of improving each other’s lives and knowing that when leaders fail, a nation literally suffers, is an important part of this programme – and this knowledge will empower the youth on it to understand that when we talk leadership, we are focusing on what matters in our society,” said Ayanda Vilakazi, CDC head of marketing and communications.
The Academy will be held at the Coega Industrial Development Zone (IDZ) Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) Park and is strategically placed to attract youth during June, a celebration of youth activism and participation. It takes place from June 24 through to June 28.
- Dr Frans Kekana: Dr Kekana is a lecturer in Philosophy, Development Economics, Sociology and in Leadership Studies. He participated on the Youth Leadership Development Programme since its inception. Dr Kekana holds qualifications in Comparative American and International Law, a PhD focused on land, economic power, and education matters from UNISA and a Doctorate in Contextual Theology and Ecumenism from the University of Netherlands.
- Lebo Pule: Pule is founder and chief executive of Lebo Pule Business Networks (LPBN). She is a seasoned social entrepreneur, a gender activist and a change agent. LPBN is her second attempt at business, in 2002 at the age of 26 she established her first formal business Exquisite Interiors an office furniture and alterations outlet. The business took off, she turned over R1.8 million in her first year of operation but due to many entrepreneurial mistakes that she made in 2006 her business could not sustain and she lost everything. She learnt many valuable lessons during the “rock bottom time” and today she travels around the country talking on entrepreneurship and on an informal basis on how to avoid those mistakes and how to learn from mistakes already made. Her true passion is influencing positive change in people, particularly women and emerging entrepreneurs. Through her own journey as an entrepreneur she realised the value of mentorship – and is therefore often found participating in dialogues aimed at addressing and dealing with the everyday issues entrepreneurs face. She gives talks around the country at conferences, schools, universities and entrepreneurial gatherings.
- Njabulo Sithebe: Sithebe is an economist with background in financial markets and MEGA development projects. He has worked as a Senior Economist at KPMG International, Coega, Standard Bank and held advisory roles in the ministries of Economic Development and Public Enterprises. His academic training includes a: Masters in Development Finance (Stellenbosch), Programme in Economic Policy (GIBS), the imagination Programme (GIBS), Post-grad training in Econometrics (UJ), BA Hons Economics (UJ), Labour Economics (UCT) and training in Social Accounting Matrices (Conningarth).
- Nomzamo Kolo: Kolo is a trained economist and the project manager of the YLDA. She holds a BComm. Degree and is studying towards a Masters in Development Economics. She also has certificates in Social Accounting Matrices, and Applied Econometrics. Nomzamo is a leading project management professional, she has management the development of various publications, events that host eminent citizens of SA, and she is an emerging author who has written various journal articles.