Sam @CEEMAN Conference - South Africa

by Samuel Duru on 19th October, 2012 at 2:03 PM CEST

A fortnight ago I had the sporting chance of participating in the 20th Annual CEEMAN Conference. The epoch-making conference was a series of interlinked events organized by CEEMAN and hosted by the University of Stellenbosch Business School, from 26-28 September 2012, in Cape Town, South Africa (the Rainbow Nation), under the general theme: Business and Educational Challenges in Dynamically Changing Environments. The conference brought together the crème de la crème of business and management education – from 31 countries, mainly those in transition. They explored insights and current trends in business and management education in emerging economies.

The conference created a space for learning, peer experience sharing and ideas exchange in a most decorous and open atmosphere. The great speakers shared their great thoughts and ideas – triggering discussions which inspired participants to contribute with their own insights and experiences – enabling them to generate relevant learning lessons to take home.

Further, it was a great pleasure to meet corporeal – elegant and results-oriented Olga Veligurska, and motherly, yet scholarly and well-achieved Prof. Danica Purg.

Sam with Prof. Danica Purg and Meron

I enjoyed the novelty of speaking and presenting Challenge:Future as a platform that innovatively complements the educational process to deans of faculties, professors and directors of Universities and Business Schools from different parts of the world. At the end of my presentation there were many questions from the audience around C:F and the C:F new competitions which have been announced at the conference.

I was very happy to meet erudite Michael Netzley(PhD) of Singapore Management University – the moderator of the parallel session (Innovations to Support the Educational Process) in which I presented, and one of Challenge:Future’s great supporters and judges.

Sam with Co-panellists - Prof. Walter Beats, Prof. Iryna Tykhomyrova and Michael Netzley(PhD)

My expectations from the conference were met – I learnt from the experts – built promising relationships, and most importantly presented Challenge:Future as a platform that can help educators to engage and track the performance of their students – via their participation in the C:F Quick Challenges and Competitions, Chapters, Local Representatives and Action Teams. Educators agreed with me that knowledge acquisition is no more confined to large lecture halls – it’s happening through peers and friends as much as through mentors – locally and globally. Following the questions and answers, many educators approached me to find out more about the 2012-13 competitions and how they can get their students involved in the C:F community.

While at the conference, Gabija Skucaite, the Director of SMK University of Applied Social Sciences in Lithuania, informed her students about C:F via email, affirming her commitment to incorporate C:F into their school curriculum. Ridwaan Asvat, in charge of Business Development at Regent Business School, Durban, South Africa, indicated interest in having me come to their school to speak to their students about C:F. The Director of Corporate Social Responsibility at EUROMED management also affirmed his readiness to get their students on board the C:F platform. I had a chat with Prof. John Powell, the Director of the Stellenbosch University Business School, concerning getting C:F SA Chapter off the ground, and he’s solidly behind us. Olga, hooked me up with Frik Landman, the Chief Executive Officer of the Stellenbosch University Business School, who is also happy to support C:F in South Africa. These are just some of the good connections and excellent relationships I built at the conference.

I have to thank Meron Semedar for helping me with the C:F exhibition desk. We showcased the Future Book, C:F Posters, T-shirts, C:F banner, etc. The Future Book was the cynosure of all eyes, we received orders of the hardcopy, but we took names and contact details of the people who ordered as we had only a few copies in display. Meanwhile, I’ve shared the PDF version with some of them.

It was a pleasant surprise to receive souvenirs form C:F and CEEMAN. A million thanks to CEEMAN and Challenge:Future for giving us such a wonderful opportunity to display our resourcefulness and youthfulness!

Below are some of the thoughts that stood out for me:

An educator said: “Business Schools should help train people who are more in touch with society and other human beings.” Adding that there should be greater access to technology in order to effectively reach a large number of people, but also warned that the society should be wary of the impact of technology in dehumanizing society. Do you agree or not?

“Africa can and should be the food basket of Africa. The soil is good enough.” “Youngsters should be encouraged to go into farming. It could be a solution for skills development and fertilization.” - Sullivan O'Carroll from Nestle. What do you think?

Prepare young people by opening their minds to receive new ideas. “People have to change in order to make a difference in the society.” "Growing together by learning together." You are nobody if you don't work together." – Prof. Danica Purg

Conclusively, I’m glad that we growing and learning together on the C:F platform, and the unique thing is that the things we learn are relevant to zapping today’s global challenges: poverty, unemployment, inequality, conflict, environmental degradation, stereotyping and social exclusion.

Samuel Duru

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Dharmesh Bhadja

Dharmesh Bhadja | Action team

BIG congratulations Sam for one of the greatest moment of your life, worth to call it 'life changing' event.

Yes, so many things to be done together. And what we need is the integrity at work, so we can impact together for the challenges around us.

For your questions,
Yes, Business schools must train the individuals for the skills for earning and productive life as well. And 'dehumanizing' is the biggest effects to be nullified properly. Here, one more thing is to understand the geographical differences and differences of demands of various people. To plan out something global, the concept may be the same, but techniques and applications must be accordance with the need of the youths, need of that country.

To encourage farming is needed worldwide, more applicable to my country India, too. Here still farming is away from technology and specificity. We lack in resources and skills to generate economical security of the person working in farming field.

Keep working man... Till miles to go...

19th October, 2012 @ 4:15 PM CEST

Stefan Alievikj

Stefan Alievikj | C:F staff

Congrats Sam from my side as well. This is immense happiness :)

22nd October, 2012 @ 11:34 AM CEST

Samuel Duru

Samuel Duru | Action team

Thank you Dharmesh! It was indeed a great experience. Exactly! Integrity is one of the most integral values we need in our works.

I agree with you that solutions to global problems should be tailored towards the specific needs of individuals, communities and countries.

Yes, farming is important – and should be encouraged in countries in transition like yours. Revitalization of agriculture will help to rebuild our rural economies? I’m of the opinion that our governments needs to make the agricultural sector more attractive by providing skills acquisition incentives to prod young people into agricultural production, processing and marketing. The farming population has aged and seriously declined; this is because young graduates are seeking jobs in big corporations and multinationals. There’s need for glamor and glitziness in the agricultural sector, especial with the emergence of new technologies and new media forms.

25th October, 2012 @ 3:41 PM CEST

Samuel Duru

Samuel Duru | Action team

Thanks you Stefan!

25th October, 2012 @ 3:42 PM CEST

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