Milpark Education won the Leading Supporter of Digital Learning category at the prestigious South African Board of People Practices (SABPP) awards ceremony. This is the fourth consecutive year Milpark Education has been honoured for its learning offering – barring 2020 when the event was postponed by the pandemic.
“We are ecstatic about winning this award,” says Maritsa Grewe, academic manager at Milpark Education and head of the National Diploma in Human Resources Management and Practices and the FET Certificate in Human Resource Management and Practice Support. “Over the past nine years, these courses have been extremely popular and year on year we have seen steady growth in learners registering for this qualification.”
SABPP is the premier professional human resources body in the country, and in a statement it described Milpark Education as showing exceptional innovation in implementing digital learning practices. Grewe said Milpark was humbled by winning the award as it competed against a formidable pool of contenders in the category, including Henley Business School and Discovery Health.
As a leading provider of higher education in South Africa, Milpark Education strives not only to offer superior academic programmes, but to create a supportive, stimulating and inspiring learning environment. Milpark Education CEO Andrew Horsfall says: “Our focus has shifted from being very curriculum-based to serving students better and tailoring our teaching approaches to ensure students are able to shine in the world we live in today.”
The SABPP award specifically highlighted Milpark Education’s HR courses, which are presented within the School of Commerce. Milpark’s other schools are: the School of Professional Accounting, the School of Financial Planning and Insurance, the School of Investment and Banking, and the Business School.
The Diploma in HR Management offers insight into people administration, labour relations, legal frameworks, communications, and skills and talent development. “Gone are the days when the HR specialist is absent from boardroom discussions,” says Grewe. As companies evolve, business processes and structures change, and this is where the HR specialist needs to communicate, nurture, and develop relationships, training and recruiting and retaining staff. Equally important, an HR specialist would look after the mental health of employees and prevent burnout and stress.
SABPP subjected award candidates to electronic monitoring visits by evaluating various regulatory and academic processing evidence Milpark conducted throughout the year.
An early adopter of digital education methods, Milpark has offered blended as well as entirely online learning experiences, with interactive content presented in the form of lectures, videos and chat programmes, as well as an online forum where students can interact with each other. Communication with lecturers is encouraged and lecturers and educators typically respond within hours of enquiries. Grewe says the lecturers on the HR courses have years of industry experience as well as academic training.
“Perhaps the big differentiator is that Milpark Education really does have the student’s interests at heart. Whenever we get a student enquiry, we look at how we can best meet every individual’s need for further professional, but also personal development,” says Grewe. Milpark staff are available after hours and often become personally invested in student performance.
Horsfall says that behind Milpark’s drive to continue innovating and improving is the desire to address South Africa’s education crisis and skills shortages in a tangible and effective way. “Many students’ academic records don’t reflect their abilities, but rather the disadvantages they’ve faced,” he says. “We want to help as much as we can to empower and enable individuals to reach their goals and realise their potential.”