TUT professor Sipho Mbatha becomes SA’s first doctorate in fashion design

Sipho Mbatha became the first South African to earn a PhD in Fashion Design from Tshwane University of Technology (TUT).

  • Sipho Mbatha, professor at Tshwane University of Technology, became the first South African to earn a doctorate in fashion design.
  • His study looked at the fashion industry and the role of government.
  • Mbatha graduated in a virtual ceremony this month.

Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) produced the country’s first Doctor of Fashion Design.

Dr Sipho Mbatha, a senior lecturer at the university’s Faculty of Arts and Design, said he was motivated to complete his doctoral studies by his mentor and research supervisor, Professor Anne Mastamet-Mason.

“When Professor Mastamet-Mason recruited me to come back for my B.Tech in 2009, she indicated that she wanted me to be the first South African to get a doctorate in fashion design,” he said. he declares.

“I took up his challenge because I never back down from any challenge. Through his mentoring and supervision, I passed my B.Tech and M.Tech with distinction. It would be a historic omission if I did not. not insist on the critical role of the NRF [National Research Fund] Thuthuka’s grant played into this achievement. ”

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Mastamet-Mason said Mbatha’s study revealed a disconnect between the textile, leather and footwear industry, the university, and the role of government in strengthening the fashion industry, especially in product development.

The results of the study were presented at two international conferences and two papers were submitted for publication.

“The study contributed significantly to the triple helix theory [a model of cooperation between a university, government and industry] and produced recommendations for government decision makers, ”Masmet-Mason said.

Mbatha was part of the virtual June ceremony where hundreds of students graduated after completing their studies at the university.

Among them, Olympic champion Caster Semenya, who obtained a postgraduate degree in sports management.

Joseph E. Golightly