‘This achievement comes with great hard work and dedication. Their credentialing is a fruition of the School’s strategic goal to ensure that all academic staff possess higher qualifications by the end of 2021; and we are on track to achieve this goal.’
So said Dean and Head of the School of Accounting, Economics and Finance, Professor Mabutho Sibanda as he congratulated staff members and masters graduates, Mr Kiran Baldavoo, Mr Yoshin Chetty, Ms Carley Cumming and Mr Bheki Nxumalo.
Baldavoo’s research titled: An Exploration of Environmental Management Policies and Practices at a Higher Education Institution in KwaZulu-Natal aimed to enhance understanding of the benefits of Environmental/Management Accounting. This research will benefit the service sector within South Africa and the African continent as well as UKZN which confronts environmental challenges.
‘As an accounting student and accountant there is not much exposure to research. This qualification empowered and assisted me in understanding that research is not an insurmountable mountain, but rather a journey that can be self-fulfilling,’ said Baldavoo, who is currently a senior auditing lecturer.
Auditing lecturer Chetty investigated Strategies for dealing with Mandatory Audit Firm Rotation (MAFR) proposed by audit and Academic professionals in KwaZulu-Natal.
The study is the first of its kind as it includes auditing as well as accounting professionals. Its findings will assist auditors and their clients to deal with challenges that may arise as a result of the implementation of MAFR in 2023.
‘My research journey was very enlightening and the skills I gained will assist me in my PhD studies in a similar field,’ said Chetty.
Management Accounting and Finance lecturer Cumming employed a constructive capitalisation model to assess the impact the new lease standard: IFRS 16 will have on the financial performance, financial position and market ratios of JSE listed technology and telecommunication companies.
‘After becoming a CA, I never thought I would study again but after a short stint in academia in 2016, I knew I would not return to the corporate world. To make the change to academia it was necessary to do a masters,’ she said.
Nxumalo’s dissertation was titled: The accounting firms’ managers’ and trainees’ perceptions of the Chartered Accountancy Profession Charter in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa.
The findings revealed that managers and trainees in the province regard the seven key elements of B-BBEE as important. Ownership, employment equity and enterprise development were rated highly by trainees, while ownership, management control and employment equity were highly valued by managers.
Nxumalo said his master’s journey was challenging, as he waited more than four months for ethical clearance, only a few managers responded to his questionnaire and the research was costly. However, he stayed on course. He is a Financial Accounting lecturer in the School.
Words: Lungile Ngubelanga
Photograph: Abhi Indrarajan