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Alumni takes Centrestage (Published January 2015)


NMMU graduate couple Tanya and Gary Hemmings, who are driven by passion dazzle audiences in PE and around the glove for almost 20 years at Centrestage.

Centrestage which started as a 7-day-a-week dinner-theatre  venue, bringing top music and comedy shows down from throughout the country. Later, Centrestage moved to the Harbour Sports Cafe an then started its relationship with the Boardwalk, where Centrestage has been reinvented from a venue to a box office, agency to a production house.

Tanya, who graduated with BCOM, PG Diploma in Accounting and also BA Psychology, and her husband Gary who studied towards A BA Arts and BCom degree have now blossomed Centrestage into a top notch entertainment company, boasting an array of exceptionally talented artists.

2015 holds many suprises for loyal Centrestage fans and first-timers with the launch  of Gino Fabbri's new show called "Wisecracks" as well as restaging popular Neil Diamond show as a fundraising event, also including artist performances such as Donna Africa and Shirley Bassey.



Farewell to former Alumni Achiever Recipient and VWSA's head (Published January 2015)


ONE of NMMU's first Alumni Achiever Award Recipients, BCOM and Postgrad CTA  graduate, David Powels, will soon be embarking on a new journey in Brazil.

Powels, who is the outgoing managing director at Volkswagen SA will take over as president of VW Brazil next month, where he will head up four plants with a total of 22000 employees. VW is Brazil's biggest car manufacturer - producing more than 700000 cars a year - and one of the company's largest outside Germany.

We are proud of David Powels who flies the NMMU flag so high.






Master's student wins top national award (Published January 2015)


NMMU master's Pharmacy student and Vice-Chancellor Scholarship recipient Lana Strydom is the joint winner of a top national pharmacy award. The alumnus shares the award with a student from Rhodes University, Christy Clayton.

The award recognises the top student based on academic excellence, leadership qualities and involvement in local and national student affairs. She is currently studying towards her MSc in Phamaceutics while lecturing part time in the pharmacy department.








NMMU produced big guns and still growing(Published January 2015)


CAPTAINS of industry, politicians, scientists, sportsmen and creative types are among the diverse groups of students who have all passed through the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University's (NMMU) academics halls.

Over the years the institutions has produced nearly 90 000 graduates who collectively hold 115 000 qualifications, from bachelors degrees, masters anddoctorates to diplomas and certificates.

The university counts amoung its alumni ANC stalwart and National Assembly chairman Cedric Frolick, MP Yusuf Cassim, former Proteas wicketkeeper Dave Richardson, Proteas coach Russell Domingo, cricketer Wayne Parnell, designer Jenni Button, Volkswagen executive David Powels, Cadillac president Johan De Nysschen, businesswoman Dr Bridgette Gasa and SABMiller chief executive Alan Clark.



NMMU true reflection of change (Published January 2015)


The University of Port Elizabeth, (UPE), whose founding was mired in political controversy, came into being 50 years go. It preceded the amalgamated entity that is today referred to as the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (NMMU), which is celebrating a milestone decade this year since the merger of UPE, the Port Elizabeth Technikon and the city’s campus of Vista University

Former vice-chancellor Rolf Stumpf, NMMU council deputy chairman Cumngce Gawe and dean of students Khaya Matiso all gave contrasting accounts of the long and difficult road it took to arrive at a new entity designed to serve all in the Eastern Cape, the country and elsewhere.

Read full article at The Herald



First black students taught white friends to toyitoyi (published January 2015)


The University of Port Elizabeth’s first black student representative council member this week stepped back in time to recall the tentative first years of establishing a diverse institution.

St Claire Adriaan, who did a B Ed at the university from 1991 to 1995, spoke this week from the US, where he is now based, about his student memories. “It was one of the greatest experiences of my life. There were few people of colour enrolled at the university and to most of us it was just a place to study, not our university."

Read full article at The Herald



How indifference turned into an academic love story (Published January 2014)


In 1966, a boy's hopes of studying at Stellenbosch University and participating at the institution's legendary intervarsity were dashed when his father insisted his son study at the newly established University of Port Elizabeth (UPE). So began an enduring academic love affair between Professor Emeritus Japie Engelbrecht and his alma mater.

"In my days there was a bioscope (cinema) film about the intervarsity that featured Stellenbosch. After watching that film, everyone wanted to go study there, myself included. My father, however had different ideas. Port Elizabeth is about 300km from Graaff-Reinet and Stellenbosch is even further."

Engelbrecht's father allayed his son's fears about the quality of the university's lectures by telling him that some of the top professors would be recruited. Although he retired last year after a mammoth innings at the university, he is still attached to the institution as a professor emeritus and oversees post graduate students.



Alumni award recipient to serve Internationally (Published January 2015)


Congratulations to NMMU Choir Conductor, Junita van Dijk, who has been selected to serve on the International Federation for Choral Music (IFCM) Artistic Committee for the World Choral Symposium in Barcelona, 2017. 

Junita’s name was put forward for nomination by the Executive Committee as “a colleague who would do an outstanding job” . This is a group of six people, three from the Barcelona region and three from around the world, who decide which choirs and lecturers to invite to the Symposium.









Madibaz cricketer called to serve Proteas (published January 2015)


Madibaz cricketer, Simon Harmer was honoured by NMMU today for his call-up to the Proteas test side.

He was presented with a beautiful frame of photos from his first test against the West Indies earlier this month.