Remarkable women recognised

By Jess Levy

The Rhodes University Women of the Year awards ceremony was organised by Amnesty International this year. It was held on Wednesday August 27 at Eden Grove and 35 women at Rhodes were nominated across seven categories. 

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Women awarded in style at the Rhodes University Women of the year awards ceremony.                                      MICHELLE SOLOMON

 Entertainment was provided by the BUA society. Adding to the atmosphere was a red carpet and a marimba band to capture the jubilation after the awards were announced. Amnesty International President, Aziza Mdee, said, “I just want to see events like this happening a lot more. We don’t have a culture of recognition, so you don’t know the achievements of the people around you.”   The recipient of the teaching award went to Joy Owen of the Anthropology department.  Agreeing with Mdee, she said, “There are many great people on campus who are often not recognised because they don’t broadcast it. It is important to be recognised and just to be thanked.” Student leadership category had the most nominations. Felicity Sibindi, a nominee, commented on the impact of her activism at Rhodes: “I didn’t realise how big it was but I am starting to get an idea.” The recipients of this award were Kathrine Furman and Chantelle Gladwin. Other recipients included Suzette Flanagan, under the administration staff category; Megan Adderley, for community engagement and Juanita Finestone-Praeg, for performing arts. “I didn’t even know about this event,” said Alude Mahali, who was nominated in the category of performing arts. “If I knew; I would have nominated people!” Philippa Francis, who received the award for sports, said that it was very unexpected. “I never knew this [awards] actually existed,” she said.  Nadine Strydom received an award in the research category. Mdee commented that this category needs a lot more nominations in the future.   A category that was entirely neglected was the support staff category. “[It] is a pity as the support staff on campus form an integral part of Rhodes,” said Mdee. The celebration and recognition of the women at Rhodes is a growing form of appreciation and should be supported by all, encouraged Mdee.

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