The University of Johannesburg, Marketing Coordinator: Faculty of Engineering and the Built Environment), Ms Precious Maputle has achieved recognition as a winner in the prestigious 2023 Mail & Guardian “Power of Women” Awards, specifically in the category of “Governing Woman.” This annual event, celebrating its 18th year, is a well-established platform that showcases the accomplishments of leading women in South Africa. It highlights their remarkable achievements and contributions to their respective fields.
The 50 exceptional women chosen as part of this year’s awards represent a select group of change-makers and industry influencers who have left a significant, positive impact on their sectors. To learn more about these inspiring women, you can visit the following link: Mail & Guardian Power of Women.
Dr. Rishen Roopchund, a Lecturer in the Chemical Engineering Technology Department and a recipient of the 2023 Top 200 Young South Africans award, nominated Precious Maputle for this distinguished honour. Following the nomination, Maputle underwent a rigorous selection process, including an interview questionnaire, and ultimately emerged as a winner during the event held on August 31.
For the past four years, Precious Maputle has been deeply involved in youth development and educational initiatives aimed at addressing educational disparities faced by learners in South Africa’s lower quintile schools and rural areas. Her programs have introduced students to science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) study options. These initiatives encompass motivational and career talks, as well as opportunities for scholarships and funding, and assistance with university applications to the University of Johannesburg.
Despite the advancements in digital technology, many learners in rural South Africa remain digital strangers due to economic challenges, illiteracy, limited network connectivity, and other obstacles. Maputle’s initiatives have fostered partnerships with various stakeholders to bridge educational gaps.
These collaborations include organisations such as the Sci-Bono Discovery Centre, Divhani Vhuyo Support and Youth Development, the Pella-Matlhako Development Group, the Rural2Rural initiative, SANCA Thusong, Sakhikamva foundation, the Department of Public Works and Infrastructure, Ga-Pila Community Development Trust, the Department of Education Francis Baard District, among numerous others.
These collaborative efforts have positioned the faculty as a pivotal contributor to the development and empowerment of future generations, ensuring equitable access to information so that learners can make informed career choices.