Celebrating 20 years of excellence with the BEd class

The North-West University’s (NWU’s) Vanderbijlpark Campus was alive with excitement and nostalgia as the BEd class of 2004 gathered to celebrate a remarkable milestone on Wednesday, 26 June.

The theme for the day was "Celebrating 20 Years of Delivering Excellence in the Education Sector," and it set the stage for an inspiring and heartfelt reunion, marking two decades of dedication, growth, and impact in education.

The event kicked off with a warm and enthusiastic welcome address by Prof Lloyd Conley, executive dean of the Faculty of Education, as he lauded teachers as the true giants of society.

"Teachers are the unsung heroes who shape the future," he said, his voice resonating with passion and conviction. "You are the giants on whose shoulders society stands tall. Your dedication, perseverance, and unwavering commitment to nurturing young minds are what build the foundation of a better world."

Prof Conley’s words struck a chord with the alumni, many of whom had spent the past two decades making significant contributions to the education sector. His speech was a powerful reminder of the profound impact that teachers have on their students, communities, and society as a whole.

Following Prof Conley’s address, the spotlight shifted to Prof Linda du Plessis, deputy vice-chancellor for planning and Vanderbijlpark Campus operations, who shared the story of Cliff Young, an Australian potato farmer from Beech Forest, Victoria. Cliff was best known for his unexpected win of the inaugural Sydney to Melbourne Ultramarathon in 1983 at 61 years of age.

Prof Du Plessis spoke passionately on the theme of perseverance, emphasising the power of resilience in the face of challenges.

"Perseverance is the cornerstone of success. Even though the road to excellence is often paved with obstacles, it is our ability to keep moving forward, despite the difficulties, that defines our journey. Each of you here today is a testament to the power of perseverance. You have faced countless challenges over the past two decades, yet you have continued to strive for excellence and make a difference in the lives of your students."

Her words resonated deeply with the audience, many of whom had faced and overcome significant challenges in their careers.

Nicolize van der Walt, section head for alumni relations, urged the educators to join the NWU Convocation and to engage in university matters.

Thereafter librarian Lindiwe Mabuya Jabu Sithole, manager for activation and sponsorship, addressed the guests, discussing alumni library benefits and potential postgraduate studies.

Finally, alumni relations practitioner Zanele Ngobese expressed her gratitude to all NWU stakeholders and guests, thanking the alumni for their continuous support.

This celebration of 20 years of excellence was a powerful reminder of the enduring legacy of teachers and the profound difference they make in the world.


Prof Lloy Conley, executive dean of the Faculty of Education, addresses the BEd class of 2004.


Prof Linda du Plessis, deputy vice-chancellor for planning and Vanderbijlpark Campus operations praises the alumni for their perseverance.


BEd alumni listens attentively.

Submitted on Wed, 07/03/2024 - 16:09