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Thursday, 25 April 2024

First Postgraduate Diploma in Public Administration graduates capped

OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT: The Department of Public Administration and Governance has produced its first graduates for the Postgraduate Diploma in Public Administration. OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT: The Department of Public Administration and Governance has produced its first graduates for the Postgraduate Diploma in Public Administration.

The Acting Head of the Department of Public Administration and Governance, Althea Whitaker, is delighted that her department has produced its first graduates for the Postgraduate Diploma in Public Administration. A total of 51 graduates who successfully completed the qualification, were capped during the eighth session of the Autumn Graduation series 2024 at the Bellville campus, which was held yesterday.

Whitaker says in a landmark move towards enhancing the efficiency, integrity, and accountability of the public sector, the national framework for the professionalisation of the public service was approved by Cabinet in October 2022. “This transformative framework underscores the commitment to equipping public servants with the right qualifications, technical skills, and a service delivery ethos.”

She adds that a pivotal aspect of this framework is the new minimum qualification standard for entry into the Senior Management Service (SMS) levels 13 to 16, set at an NQF level 8. “This represents a significant advancement from the previous minimum standard of entry at NQF level 7, to be fully implemented by 2025.”

The Department of Public Administration and Governance took the lead by launching its first cohort in the Postgraduate Diploma in Public Administration NQF level 8 qualification in 2023. This pioneering initiative saw 51 students graduate, meeting the new entry level requirement for senior management positions with the right qualification and technical skills.

“These aspiring leaders were exposed to a comprehensive curriculum covering Corporate Governance, Public Policy, Financial Management and Accountability, Development Management, Strategic Disaster Management, and Research Methodology. It is worth noting that two out of the seven Summa Cum Laude students in the university hailed from the Department of Public Administration and Governance.

“Congratulations to Elizabeth Julies and Tamsyn Whitaker for this outstanding achievement!”

Elizabeth says: “Graduating Summa Cum Laude as part of the first cohort for Public Administration makes it so much more special. It's definitely another feather in my cap as I'm currently busy with Master's. My message would be: "Hard and difficult is better than nice and easy. Three things that really work are discipline, reading, and being glued to your seat.”

For Tamsyn Whitaker, being part of the first cohort to graduate in the Postgraduate Diploma in Public Administration “fills me with immense pride and a sense of accomplishment. It's an honour to be a trailblazer in this programme and to contribute to its legacy”.

To prospective students, I would say embrace the opportunity to be part of something new and groundbreaking. The Postgraduate Diploma in Public Administration offers a unique chance to delve into the intricacies of governance and make a meaningful impact in the public sector. Seize this chance to expand your knowledge, skills, and network, and pave the way for future generations of public administrators.

In addition, Nicole Khadalie and Tsepo Sethole distinguished themselves by completing their qualifications with Cum Laude, showcasing their dedication to academic excellence.

The Department is also celebrating the graduation of students from various other qualifications:

  • Diploma (Foundation programme): 26 graduates
  • Diploma (Mainstream): 67 graduates
  • Advanced Diploma: 88 graduates

“As we reflect on the achievements of the past year, we extend our heartfelt congratulations to all the graduates of 2023. Your dedication, hard work, and commitment to excellence have set a benchmark for others to aspire to,” Whitaker enthused.

She continued: “As you embark on your professional journey, may you continue to uphold the values of efficiency, integrity, and accountability in serving our nation. You are the future leaders of our public service, and we are confident that you will make a significant impact in shaping a brighter future for all South Africans.

“Well done to the class of 2023! Your success is a testament to the power of education, determination, and the unwavering spirit of public service.”

Written by Aphiwe Boyce