Dear colleagues and students
I am pleased to write to you to announce two Leadership Lekgotla appointments that were approved by Council at the last meeting held in October.
Following the Council meeting, the relevant Human Resources processes had to be followed prior to an official announcement being made. It is with delight that I can, now that all processes have been concluded, confirm the appointment of the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (DVC) for Transformation, Student Affairs and Social Responsiveness as well as the Dean of Commerce.
It gives me great pleasure to announce that Professor Elelwani Ramugondo has been appointed as the new DVC, while Professor Suki Goodman is set to take over as the Dean of Commerce.
Both appointments are consistent with and give tangible expression to our commitment to transformation, excellence and sustainability at UCT.
In Professor Ramugondo and Professor Goodman, we have highly capable candidates who emerged out of a thorough and competitive selection process. Without doubt, the appointment of the two will put us in a good position at senior leadership level as we endeavour in our vision to unleash human potential for a fair and just society.
While both are not new to UCT, as they are alumni and current employees, I share a bit more on them below so that the campus community gets to know them and is aware of the capable hands this institution will collectively be in when these two individuals join our Leadership Lekgotla.
Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Transformation, Student Affairs and Social Responsiveness
Professor Ramugondo will start her tenure as the DVC for Transformation, Student Affairs and Social Responsiveness on 1 July 2022. She is currently on a sabbatical until the end of June next year.
Currently serving as deputy dean for postgraduate education in the Faculty of Health Sciences, Professor Ramugondo has over 20 years of academic experience in a research-intensive university environment.
She has an excellent track record of engaging with student affairs within governance structures in various leadership roles. She was appointed special advisor on transformation to the Vice-Chancellor in 2015, following calls for decolonisation by the student-led Rhodes Must Fall movement. She served in this role with remarkable integrity during a turbulent time and an historical moment of change in the higher education sector in South Africa.
Professor Ramugondo is a founding member of the Black Academic Caucus. She is also the chair or former chair of various bodies within and outside the university, including UCT’s Academic Freedom Committee and the Rhodes Scholarship Western Cape and Northern Cape selection committee. She has been a member of the executive for the South African College of Health Sciences Deans (SACOHSD). In this role, she played a strategic part in SACOHSD forging effective relationships with professional bodies for health sciences disciplines/professions.
She has published numerous peer‐reviewed research articles and chapters in books, as well as book reviews. She has recently published a co-edited book titled Concepts in occupational therapy: Understanding Southern perspectives, as well as co-edited two special issue editions on decolonising the academy for Critical African Studies. She has supervised numerous student research projects to completion, including 13 master’s dissertations and seven PhD theses.
She obtained her BSc, MSc and PhD qualifications in occupational therapy at UCT.
Professor Ramugondo will take over from Emeritus Professor Martin Hall, who served as acting DVC since 1 April 2021. We are grateful to Emeritus Professor Hall for stepping in and providing leadership to this important and strategic portfolio.
Dean of the Faculty of Commerce
Professor Goodman, the new Dean of the Faculty of Commerce, will assume her new role with effect from 1 January 2022.
Professor Goodman is the current head of the School of Management Studies. Prior to assuming the role as head of the School, she headed the section of Organisational Psychology. Both roles have prepared her with extensive leadership and management experience.
She is highly acclaimed in her areas of research, which include organisational behaviour and programme evaluation. She has published numerous peer‐reviewed research articles and chapters in books.
She teaches across both organisational psychology and programme evaluation and has for many years taught courses at the bookends (first year and master’s).
In 2017, she was the recipient of the Society for Industrial & Organisational Psychology of South Africa Presidential Merit Award for Academic Excellence. She was recognised for her dedication to institutional transformation in industrial and organisational psychology.
Professor Goodman is part of the national editorial board of the South African Journal of Industrial Psychology and a member of the South African Society for Monitoring and Evaluation.
She holds a PhD, master’s and honours degrees in organisational psychology from UCT.
We express our appreciation to Professor Edwin Muchapondwa, who has been serving as the interim dean of the faculty since 1 July 2021.
I am certain you will all join me in congratulating Professors Ramugondo and Goodman as they embark on their new roles. We are looking forward to them joining the Leadership Lekgotla in 2022.
Professor Mamokgethi Phakeng
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