Alumni feature: Raymond Matlala
Raymond Matlala is an entrepreneur and Enactus (formerly SIFE) TUT Alumnus. He is Deputy Chairperson of the Enactus Gauteng Alumni Association and is championing the EnactusZA Education Fund that will raise funding for Enactus South Africa members who are bright minded and are currently enrolled at higher education institutions across the country to aid them in their studies.
Motto: “Don’t look down on anyone unless you are helping them up.”
Raymond shares his passion for developing entrepreneurs and is presenting entrepreneurship workshops in and around Hammanskraal. In addition, he co-founded three companies in 2013, namely Inter-African Research Consultancy, Matlala Enterprises and Projects, and Lukilaw Events and Services.
Raymond’s family viewed his higher education qualification as a dream coming true as he was the first child in his family to enrol for tertiary education. He sees education as being vital for overcoming the social challenges faced by impoverished communities and is inspired by Nelson Mandela’s quote: “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”
He was recruited to Enactus through a friend in 2010. The outcome of being an Enactus member broadened his mind beyond simply completing his national diploma in Business Related Entrepreneurship and getting a job. It enabled him to think strategically and ignited his approach to challenges that made him to be problem-solving while gaining business leadership skills and becoming a team player. His experiences with Enactus resulted in a mental shift from considering being an employee to an entrepreneur who has the potential to employ others.
While serving as an Enactus member, he played various roles that included:
- Leading the Enactus Team’s Constitution (formally SIFE TUT Constitution)
- BAB facilitator
- Project team member Green Campus Initiative.
The projects he was involved in were:
- Project Ithemba
- 5 penny Friday
- Financial Literacy
- Business pitch for fashion design understudies.
Memorable Enactus memories:
Two highlights of his term as an Enactus member and leader were attending the Enactus National Competition in 2011 at Emperors Palace when he was in awe of the impact of other projects by the various other Enactus (then SIFE) teams that were transforming the lives of people in need. Watching the other team’s presentations made him and his team perceive their projects differently and it inspired them to amplify their projects for the following year.
Another remarkable memory for him was in 2012 when their dedication and hard work was rewarded by winning three special competition award grants and achieving an overall performance of being placed in the top five among the twenty seven competing institutions.
Life after Enactus:
Raymond is a Doctoral Candidate in Business, specialising Entrepreneurship with a focus on youth and undergraduate entrepreneurship development.
He has presented research papers at international conferences with some of his work published in international journals. Raymond is also an education research specialist who has worked on international projects with reputable organisations e.g., United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization [UNESCO], Southern African Development Community [SADC] and Commonwealth secretariat through JET Education Services. Additionally, Raymond is an international youth activist, helping youth to apply and take an interest in international youth conferences and summits. He is a member of the South African Youth for International Diplomacy, where he serves as the BRICS Coordinator. He is a co-founder of the Euro-BRICS Young Leaders’ Platform, serving as the National Representative for South Africa.