UWC’s winning entrepreneur in the EDHE (Entrepreneurship Development in Higher Education) Intervarsity Competition is the 22-year-old final-year Bachelor of Law student, Munashe Dzikiti.
She walked away with R20 000 in prize money when she clinched the category for an existing business with the most social impact. She is the same student who, earlier this year, won the Enactus entrepreneurial competition.
It is a highly competitive race to secure a spot in any of the categories in the EDHE competition, which boasts 24 national finalists selected from 1682 successful submissions from all 26 South African universities.
But it was Dzikiti’s winning presentation and the simple premise of her business: to make it easy for learners to practice mathematics, that eventually secured her win in this category.
Dzikiti said her choice to focus on mathematics is based on the fact that the subject is one that most learners find intimidating and challenging. The eRank app is a game designed to help build the cognitive skills necessary to navigate the everyday maths challenges of life with confidence.
Dzikiti said about the app: “This is a call to action to move Africa forward. I think investing in eRank Play is investing in the future. It answers the need of teachers who wish they could revise more in class. Now learners can do that at the click of a button,” she said.
“The EDHE Intervarsity has been an incredible learning curve: I totally recommend joining the Intervarsity, because you gain more than just a cash prize.”
She thanked her mentors at the UWC Centre for Entrepreneurship and Innovation (CEI) for their support. “Our co-ordinator, Wendy Mehl, deserves a huge thank-you for having had such faith in me. She’s the reason I’m here.”
Mehl said: “In the context of today’s competitive employment and commercial market, taking part in the national EDHE Entrepreneurship Intervarsity provides excellent exposure to our students. It broadens the horizons of studentpreneurs, introduces them to new business networks and expand their skill sets.
“We are incredibly proud of Munashe for the win and we are grateful for the competition's aim of identifying the top student entrepreneurs at public South African universities. The idea is to recognise and showcase their businesses and invite investment into this cohort of student businesses.
“The competition also provides opportunities for aspiring entrepreneurs in the ideation phase to pitch their innovative business ideas and it is an opportunity for universities to showcase their entrepreneurial talent and demonstrate how they support and grow the next generation of business leaders.
“To enroll, studentpreneurs submitted their innovative ideas or existing businesses in the innovative business ideas category. Furthermore, students could participate in the existing business section of the competition, which included a general category and categories for technology and social impact.
The event has been running for four years and is hosted by the Department of Higher Education and Training and Universities South Africa (USAf).
Some of the category winners who each won R20 000 include:
- The Existing Business – Tech category winner: Asonele Gevenga, a Bachelor of Commerce (Finance) graduate from the University of Cape Town. His company, Fleeker Finance, helps students build a credit score.
- Existing Business – General category winner: Nicoline Kriek, a University of Cape Town final year Law student. Her perfume company, The French Parfumerie, distributes country-wide, employs twelve women and has 28 sales representatives.