Fulu Netswera. Picture: SUPPLIED
Fulu Netswera. Picture: SUPPLIED

Delays in setting up a business school at the Durban University of Technology (DUT) are not dampening the enthusiasm of Fulu Netswera, who is tasked with making it happen.

Netswera, dean of the university’s faculty of management sciences, was previously director of the Potchefstroom-based, internationally accredited business school at North-West University. He moved to DUT, based in Greyville, in January after being asked to create a business school.

Progress has been made. For example, he says, executive education and postgraduate management programmes previously run by other faculties are now his responsibility. More academics, some international, have been recruited. Relationships are being developed with universities and education authorities in other African countries.

There is also talk of building a separate business school campus. Netswera says two potential sites have been identified near Umhlanga. Architects have been engaged and the university has offered R100m towards the cost.

Inevitably, Covid-19 has interfered with Netswera’s timetable. The government’s Council on Higher Education has accredited DUT’s MBA programme but the intention to introduce it in January 2021 has been thwarted. Instead, the first intake of students is planned for June.

Netswera says:  “With all the uncertainties created by the pandemic, we thought it best to postpone until we and our students have a clearer picture.” DUT’s part-time MBA will include face-to-face classroom teaching. At the moment, it’s not clear when Covid social distancing rules will allow it.  He says optional specialities within the MBA are likely to include health management, marine law and higher education management.

The last two will be offered in conjunction with schools in the Netherlands and Canada respectively.

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