My Name is Prudence Mphahlele. After a rigorous process and assessments, on Thursday I was met with an acceptance email for an MBA program at University of Johannesburg Business School. An exciting journey awaits and I am very humbled by this opportunity.
South Africa’s economy is facing perennial problems, in particular unemployment that is currently at a solid 29% and of that 29 %, 58% is youth. As such entrepreneurship is amongst one of the factors considered to be a driver of accelerated economic growth and will be crucial in addressing the unemployment issue that South Africa is facing.
However, perhaps the most inhibiting factors is that African female entrepreneurs especially those in rural areas continue to face high entry barriers to successfully penetrate the market and these include lack of support, prevailing negative socio-cultural attitudes and gender bias. They suffer low credibility when dealing with stakeholders and are often hampered by governmental laws, institutional policies and the regulatory environment.
So why do an MBA now?
On the brink of the fourth industrial revolution that is already changing the business landscape, there is an emergent perspective that entrepreneurship may unlock stagnating global economic growth and some experts opine that this is particularly true with respect to females who constitute more than half the world population and their roles as entrepreneurs.Studying an MBA will equip me with an academic arsenal necessary to tackle male and female disproportions when it comes to entrepreneurship opportunities and bring solutions designed to be proactive with long term approaches rather than to be reactive which is the present status quo.
With only 6.6% female CEO’s in the fortune 500 companies with no black representation since Ursula Burns of Xerox who has since left in 2016, equipping myself with business related principles and teachings from the MBA supporting my entrepreneurial ethos, I will be in a better position to excel in the vigorous South African business and/or entrepreneurial landscape. I will use this qualification to impart knowledge to a diverse pool of socio-economical, entrepreneurs and future business leaders to be equipped with skill and attitudes to transform rural areas, change the entrepreneurial landscape, especially in relations to female entrepreneurs to move South Africa and the African continent forward.
This has been the main driver for me to apply my skills to address this problem, I have in the interim started small scale business initiatives and mentor a few single mothers from underprivileged communities on entrepreneurship.
With its academic rigor, commitment to Africa and focus on social impact, the University of Johannesburg Business School‘s MBA will equip me with viable knowledge and fundamental business skills to scale these small initiatives to larger more audacious projects.
I would therefore like you to support me by donating to my Go Get Funding page to help raise funds for my MBA program and support my vision.Not only do I aim to create successful businesses but I want to build and maintain the inspiration and bring change to young women from similar background and in small but effective ways help bring change to the narrative of South Africa’s various business sectors and change their industries and improve businesses for other like-minded African women with the determination to lift themselves up but don’t yet know how to do that.
Thank you for taking time to read my plight and I hope you are able to help, with however, little as you can. Every little cent makes a big difference.