Ms Estelle Cloete, Centre for Lifelong Learning: Secretary
Tell us about yourself, background, where you were born, your high school years, university etc.
I was born 87 kilometres outside Windhoek towards the south in a small town, called Rehoboth. I attended Dr Lemmer High School during the old dispensation in Rehoboth. I matriculated and started my professional career in 1990 at First National Bank (FNB) where I worked for 18 years. During the last two years of my employment at FNB, I was appointed in the Operation Risk Department as an Accounting Controller, responsible for all the FNB branches across Namibia. With eighteen years’ experience gained within the financial industry, I was ready for new challenges. I was, therefore, part of the project team which implemented a new online financial balancing system that save so much time and paperwork. I have a reputation for attention to detail and delivering within strict deadlines. I also enjoyed working with financial data and therefore I believe you should love what you are doing. Eventually I was looking for new ventures and resigned in 2004. My new career started as Secretary at St. Andrew's Primary School. I took up this position seeing that I have a very positive incline towards working with learners and always tried to maintain good interpersonal relations to meet their needs. During that time I also served on the Parents School Board of St. Andrew’s Primary School for 3 years.
Your journey at the Polytechnic of Namibia:
I applied for the vacant secretary position six years ago at the Polytechnic of Namibia which includes a challenging finance role and I believed that I can settle down here and make a real contribution to the Institutions vision. Since July 2009, I have been employed as Secretary at the Polytechnic of Namibia, Centre for Open and Lifelong Learning (COLL). Since then I have acquired so much knowledge and have equipped myself with the skills that would make it possible for me to be able to execute the task or job at hand in an efficient and professional manner. The position of Coordinator: Finance and Office Management at Centre for Open and Lifelong Learning had been advertised and I applied and was appointed. I am fully qualified, because I hold a Diploma in Business Management, two Certificates in Management Principles and First Line Management Principles, as well as several in-service training, directly related to the requirements and responsibilities of this position. I further have 23 years relevant experience and skills required for this position. During the past 5 years at Centre for Open and Lifelong Learning, I have managed to put effective systems in place for the smooth functioning of office and finance related tasks. I also managed to build positive relations across the Polytechnic of Namibia, as my position requires me to work with all the Centre for Open and Lifelong Learning Regional Centres and with colleagues across the Schools, Academic and Administrative Departments. I am a self-starter, who strongly believes that effective communication, attention to detail and my adaptive nature, with my strong interpersonal and analytical skills; made me the ideal candidate for this position. I will be able to hit the ground running without the necessity for training on the responsibilities for this position. I know the organisational culture of the Polytechnic of Namibia and am also trained to work on ITS.
What are your expectations for the new NUST? How do you think it will benefit you?
As the new Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST), we need to ensure that we are ready to offer our students what we stand for and that is to be a prestigious University of Science and Technology. We need to monitor our student’s expectations to ensure we are constantly meeting and exceeding them.
Please share with us your success habits: Have a sense of gratitude, compliment others, forgive others and accept responsibility for your failures, keep a journal, wish others to succeed, keep a to-be list, set goals and develop life plans, continuously learn to operate from a transformational perspective, keep a to-do project list, embrace change, exude joy, share information and data, talk about ideas, read every day, give other people credit for their victories to enjoy your own victories, be a motivator in order to motivate yourself .
What is your motto in life?
To graduate in life means you need to set your targets, have a positive, honest attitudebe willing to adhere to moderated teaching and learning methods and experience successful end products, your own well-deserved achievement.
Success quote: “Talents gathered to educate and to entertain”, by Mr Michael J Kisting.
If your life could be a newspaper heading, what would it be?
Woman, who served the nation with hope, faith, love, obedience, unlimited grace and changed eternity, because she sees beauty in everything.
Any other thing you would like to share: I would like to thank our icon, Professor Tjivikua for his integrity, dedication, commitment and perseverance for such a great achievement by transforming the Polytechnic into a University. Professor Tjivikua holds a record of success and mostly listens to our students instead of taking the risk of losing everything. He is well-known for excellence, because to him it is a habit and not an act. I wish you triumphs, prosperity and good health in your future endeavours. Let’s follow the path of such a great leader in order to rejoice in our own victories. Secretaries, without a doubt you are a class above the rest and can say in truth, your boss got the best.