Alumni Magazine Edition 6


bubbly, loud and very open character.”

strongly about education. “My father always says, if we want to be business owners, he does not have a problem with that decision. He just wants us to get that degree first and then we can talk about venturing into business.” Maphutha completed a Bachelor’s Degree in Education at the University of Johannesburg and is currently busy with her postgraduate degree in Education at the University of South Africa. She says that one of the highlights of obtaining her degree has to be the self-discipline that she learned during the journey of studying. “I think, had I not disciplined myself in my university years, I would not

Charmaine Maphutha (26) is currently an educator at the

Rakediwane Primary School, having returned to her roots in Limpopo. Born in the Ga-Masemola village in Limpopo province, Maphutha started her schooling career in the province that is known for its abundant wildlife. After moving to and starting high school in Groblersdal, her family moved to The City of Gold and Maphutha completed her basic schooling at Mondeor High School, in the south of Johannesburg. As a scholar, she was very popular among her peers, playful and always participated in sports. “I am an extrovert, so I was known for my

Teaching was always on the cards for Maphutha, who only had one thought on her mind when applying to university: get a teaching degree. This was despite those who didn’t believe that she would achieve her life’s ambitions. “I wanted to be that teacher that looks beyond family backgrounds. I wanted to be a teacher that is open about societal issues and tries to find solutions. I wanted to be exactly who I am today.” University was always a foregone conclusion for Maphutha as her parents, both teachers, felt very

Then a big brother from her church congregation gave her a Rand Afrikaans University – the forerunner to the University of Johannesburg – financial aid booklet. There she found an offer from PricewaterhouseCoopers that led to the award of a full scholarship, which included tuition fees, paid residence, textbooks and a stipend. After doing two degrees – Bachelor of Commerce (Accounting, awarded with distinction) in 2000 and Honours in Accounting in 2001 – she went on to do her Master of Commerce degree at the University of Johannesburg, which she completed in 2004. “I love learning. I was always in awe of being on campus every day. I was the nerd who went to look for files in mid-January.” Montjane was a tutor while studying, providing extra maths lessons, which earned her enough to buy her first car. She completed her academic articles before moving to PricewaterhouseCoopers in 2001, where she later became partner. In 2008, she joined Standard Bank as the Chief Financial Officer for Personal and Business Banking in South Africa. She has occupied several other roles in the unit, including Head of Home Loans, Head of Credit and then Chief Executive for Personal and Business Banking in South Africa, a role she has “proudly occupied for the last eight years”.

Funeka Montjane, Chief Executive of Personal and Business Banking for South Africa at the Standard Bank Group describes herself as a proud nerd who has always loved learning. Montjane, who has climbed the ranks at Standard Bank South Africa over the past almost 13 years, started her career at PricewaterhouseCoopers, where she also steadily climbed to the position of partner, spending a total of eight years at the accounting firm. Born in Soweto and raised in the former homeland of KwaNdebele, Montjane went to Zithuthukiseni Primary School, Phumzile Secondary school and Fred Norman Secondary School. “I am a proud nerd. I have just always loved learning.” As a child, she was 11 when she saw a job advert in the Sunday Times newspaper for Chartered Accountants. “The salary listed was R10 000 per month, which was more money than I had ever imagined. From that day onwards,

Charmaine Maphutha: Non-Profit Extraordinaire and a M&G top 200 Young South African

have achieved my goal of becoming an educator.”

“I look forward to an exciting chapter at Standard Bank Group in my new role as Chief Executive Officer for Consumer and High Net Worth Clients.” Montjane attributes much of her success to her grandparents, whom she describes as “fantastic”. Although they were not highly educated, they are community leaders and fierce feminists. “They instilled a self-belief and drive in me that I still carry with me today.” When facing challenges, Montjane enjoys daily meditations during which she walks to clear her

Maphutha, who worked while she studied, co-founded the non-profit organisation, the Bopedi Hope Foundation, in June 2016. The foundation assists girl child learners to enjoy school without being concerned about basic necessities such as sanitary pads, school shoes, clothes, toiletries and anything else that is really needed. She says that what makes her stand out from her peers is her strength and resilience. Even though life has been hard, she has made it through and developed her personality, she says. “I am glad I am so self- motivated because it has made this life thing easier.” Maphutha was selected as one of the M&G’s 200 Young South Africans for her work with the foundation, she plans to study further and grow Bopedi Hope Foundation so that it can touch more lives. She would also love to grow her water purification business.

I set my sights on being a Chartered Accountant.”

Always a “ferocious” reader, she realised that, once the CA dream was ignited, she would need to go to an accredited university. “I applied at the University of the Witwatersrand for my undergraduate degree. I then applied for all the financial aid opportunities listed in the Financial Assistance and Scholarship booklet. They all turned me down.”

mind, stay healthy, and practise mindfulness.

“Seeing the present moment for what it is (and not speculating about the future) has helped me to find the clarity and resilience to navigate many storms.”




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