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Witsies recognised in M&G’s 200 Young South Africans 2017

- Wits University

More than 25 Witsies are included in this year’s Mail & Guardian list for the most notable young SAs under the age of 35.

The recognition attests to the quality of leaders Wits University produces and grooms.

Now in its 12th year, the supplement showcases the young stars who are making sterling contributions in their respective fields and who are shaping the country's future.

It celebrates talent in the fields of Arts and Culture, Business and Entrepreneurship, Civil Society, Education, Environment, Film and Media, Health, Justice and Law, Politics and Government, Science and Technology, and Sport.

The Witsies who made the list in their respective fields, are:

Arts and Culture

Claudine Ullman: Comedian and Wits alumna. Ullman read for a Bachelor of Arts in Dramatic Arts at Wits.

Ntokozo Kunene: Costume and production designer. Kunene holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree in economics, business finance and law from Wits.

Business and Entrepreneurship

Dr Yudhvir Seetharam: Part-time Lecture in the School of Economic and Business Sciences at Wits and Head of Analytics, FNB Business. Seetharam obtained his Bachelor of Commerce degree in business finance and economics at Wits and his honours degree in finance.

Itumeleng Merafe: Founding director of the Bokamoso Cross Mentorship Programme. He obtained his masters in the management of finance and investments with distinction at the Wits Business School.

Philani Sangweni: Chief Operating Officer of Fundi (formerly known as Eduloan) and graduate of the Wits Business School’s Executive Programme.

Mawethu Nkosana: Founder of The Black Love Association, Nkosana graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in psychology and political science from Wits.

Ntokozo Yingwana: Gender activist and PhD-candidate in the African Centre for Migration Studiest Wits.

Nomonde Nyembe: Attorney at the Centre for Applied Legal Studies at Wits.


Dr Elias Phaahla: Researcher at the National Institute for the Humanities and Social Sciences. Phaahla obtained his honours degree (with distinction) in international political economics from Wits.  

Xichavo Alecia Ndlovu: Political Studies lecturer at the University of Cape Town. Ndlovu completed her undergraduate studies at Wits and obtained her Masters of Arts (cum laude) in international relations from Wits, earning her a number of accolades for this achievement.

Mangi Tshikomba: Founder and CEO of Things Technologies. Tshikomba obtained a Bachelor of Science honours degree in Civil Engineering from Wits.

Film & Media

Onke Dumeko: Strategic Marketing Manager at Ndalo Media. Dumeko obtained a degree in marketing and economic science at Wits and an honours degree in marketing.


Dr Aayesha Soni: Community Service Doctor in the Helen Joseph Hospital. She completed her medical degree at Wits at age 23.

Dr Kalli Spencer: Urologist at the Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Academic Hospital. Spencer completed his undergraduate studies at Wits.

Dr Nokwethemba Mtshali-Hadebe: Chief Executive at Bertha Gxowa Hospital. She completed her MBA at Wits.

Dr Salome Maswime: Obstetrician and gynaecologist at the Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital, Wits Lecturer and Director of the Wits Obstetrics and Gynaecology Clinical Research Division. Maswime obtained her PhD at Wits.

Dr Nqoba Tsabedze: Cardiology researcher at the Charlotte Maxeke Academic Hospital. Tsabedze is currently completing his PhD on the genetics of idiopathic cardiomyopathy at Wits.

Dr Sivuyile Madikana: Medical Officer in the Gauteng Department of Health and brand ambassador, Brothers for Life. Madikana recently completed his MBA with the Wits Business School.

Natalia Neophytou:  Biokineticist and Lecturer at the Wits Centre for Exercise Science and Sports Medicine. She obtained her masters degree in exercise science from Wits, and is currently pursuing a PhD in autism spectrum.

Justice and Law

Rorisang Mzozoyana: Senior attorney at Norton Rose Fulbright. Mzozoyana holds a masters of law degree from Wits and she also lectured real estate law at Wits.

Tefo Tlale: Advocate at the National Bar Council of South Africa. Tlale read for a law degree at Wits.

Phetole Modika: Partner at Bowmans Law Firm. Modika graduated with a law degree from Wits in 2008.

Science and Technology

Dr Nadine Gravett: Sleep researcher and Senior Lecturer in the School of Anatomical Sciences at Wits.

Cikida Gcali: Wits alumni and petroleum engineering masters student.

Funeka Nkosi: Founder of Green Girls Stem Foundation and PhD student at Wits.

Dr Tiisetso Lephoto: Microbiology Researcher at Wits. Lephoto obtained her PhD in molecular and cell biology with an emphasis on microbiology, biotechnology, genomics, nematology and bioinformatics from Wits last year.

Dr Thandiswa Ngcungcu: Ngcungcu obtained her PhD in human genetics at Wits. She is currently a lecturer in the Division of Human Genetics at Wits.

Nthato Moagi: Aerodynamics Engineer at Denel Dynamics. Moagi obtained his Bachelor of Science degree in aeronautical engineering at Wits.


Tshepang Tlale: Chess champion and second year psychology and philosophy student at Wits.