Vega student overwhelmed by R50 000 bursary from Dinokeng Project
First year Vega BA Brand Building and Management student Kwanele Makhoba (22) from Dube, Soweto was overcome with emotion today when he was awarded R 50 000 study bursary from the Dinokeng Project. The bursary was the result of a partnership between Dinokeng and Vega, the School of Brand Leadership during 2010 on a fun and inspiring brand challenge that aimed to challenge the students with a real-life brand exercise and inspire excellence in these young creatives. In return the Dinokeng Project would give a R50 000 bursary to a talented, high performing and previously disadvantaged student.
Kwanele Makhoba was selected for his top marks in the subjects Brand Strategy and Creative Development, also for his commitment to the creative industry.
Kwanele has always had a passion for storytelling. From a young age he was enthralled by tales from shebeen regulars where he grew up. He began writing whilst at school and entered a short film into the Quickies Film Festival: Jesus Might Still Be Around. It was through this competition that he first encountered Vega and the creative world of advertising and film.
Since then, the 22 year old has spent time studying film and working as a scriptwriter. He now studies full time with Vega and works part time as a game designer.Kwanele shares: “I dreaded the idea of not having a formal qualification, as I understood what it could do for my career as a creative.”He admits that studying and working is a challenge and that this bursary will help to ease financial pressures, allowing him to focus on his studies. “One day I hope to run my own media company, which would allow me to educate and employ creatives that might not have had the means to pursue further education like I did.”
Dawn Robertson, CEO of the Dinokeng Project, says: “We wanted to inject fresh ideas and energy into the Dinokeng brand, as well as assist a previously disadvantaged student to enter the communications sector by providing the opportunity to study at an internationally recognised and leading brand innovation school.”
The initial brief to Vega students was to produce a creative marketing and communications campaign that showcased the unique aspects of the Dinokeng area and inject renewed energy to the brand. The result came to be known as the Meet Dinokeng campaign. Five local residents shared their personal stories and demonstrated the warm- and welcoming spirit of Dinokeng. It profiled the concept of travel with a conscience by supporting responsible tourism initiatives and encouraged people to visit Dinokeng. The premise was to take a relaxing holiday while supporting the local community – and what better way to communicate the concept than by profiling the very individuals that stand to benefit from tourism.
Print-, radio- and online campaigns were launched in May. Since then enquiries into Dinokeng as destination have grown considerably.
The Dinokeng Project plans to continue working with Vega. Robertson says: “Our relationship with Vega does not end here as we have engaged Gordon Cook, the National Brand Navigator, to advise and guide a bigger project on the development of the Gauteng Tourism brand. The school’s design philosophy combined with a systematic application of brand strategy are key ingredients in delivering the Meet Dinokeng concept, which has created a trend for the promotion of responsible tourism.”
The bursary was awarded this week and will go towards covering the costs of Kwanele’s second year of study at Vega.
Robertson says: “We are delighted to be able to assist Kwanele and we believe that investing in talented young people like him will contribute to creating a South Africa that we can all be proud of.”