Meet Goolam Fakier | GetSmarter Notable Achiever

2 minutes   |  LAW

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In recognition of students who stand out from the crowd, GetSmarter’s Notable Achievers campaign highlights a top-performing student each week.

Goolam has just completed the UCT Practical Labour Law Short Course and has been chosen by our Student Success Team for being a top achiever in the course and for maintaining consistency throughout his learning experience.

Here’s what he had to say about his experience:

Why did you decide to take the UCT online short course with GetSmarter?

I’ve been in management positions previously and found many managers probably have the skills to manage a group of people or departments. However, they aren’t familiar with legal labour processes, especially regarding the disciplinary processes.

This resulted in many of them making mistakes, finding themselves on the other side of the law. On the flip side, I also found there are certain employers who exploit their employees, especially employees who don’t understand their rights and how to interpret certain terms. That’s the reason why I took this course. My intention is to be the voice for the voiceless.

What were your concerns before enrolling on the UCT Practical Labour Law course? How were your concerns alleviated and why?

I was sceptical about doing it online because I prefer having contact sessions with peers and tutors. I was also a bit disappointed that the course wasn’t accredited and was worried that it wouldn’t hold any value. This was quickly resolved when I found how interesting the online campus was. The turnaround time to questions posted online and the advice shared was very good. Furthermore, I was also assured that any recognised certificate from UCT will definitely carry weight, and with that, I felt much better.

What aspects are you enjoying about learning online with GetSmarter?

The fact that it is online and available to us all the time was a huge advantage. I could be online anytime and get the response I need. Even though deadlines had to be met, the fact that I could do this in my own time has been the advantage most of the time.

How do you plan to use the skills you learned on this course in your career?

I would like to further my studies in Labour Law. At the moment, I’d like to register with the CCMA. I’m also offering my assistance to my colleagues and friends.

What does it mean to you to earn a UCT certificate?

This means so much to me. I didn’t have an opportunity to study at UCT and having this as part of my CV, I’m sure it will help me stand out. I’m humbled.

Will you be displaying your certificate?

Absolutely. I need that to be an encouragement to me, my wife, my kids and everyone who visits me. It should remind me to further my studies and to follow my dreams. It should also serve as a reminder to others to encourage them to do whatever they set their minds to.

Our Student Success Team identified you as being an outstanding student. Why do you think you are a Notable Achiever and what advice can you give to others looking to do this course?

This has caught me by surprise. I’m humbled to have been nominated twice as a Notable Achiever. The first was after my first two assignments and this one on the completion of the course. I’m not sure why I have been nominated, though, especially since there were so many other participants.

However, to answer the question, I think it’s because I was able to engage with my colleagues, success manager and tutor. I was able to provide in-depth written assignments at times, and always completed my tasks at hand. I wasn’t afraid to ask questions and was able to provide case studies throughout the course.

My advice to students would be to always ask if you don’t understand. Be proactive, read any labour law material, understand labour law terms, sign up to free newsletters from the various labour law sites. This would give you a perfect opportunity to get another perspective of things. When you are handed a written assignment, do research before answering them. And most importantly, love what you do and apply yourself. Thank you once again for the opportunity.


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