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Riding out the year in style at the electric 2023 MASUP Year-end Function

The Mining Alumni Society of the University of Pretoria (MASUP), a society affiliated with the University of Pretoria’s Department of Mining Engineering, serves as a networking platform for mining engineers and professionals in the mining industry. Several MASUP members have reached the highest ranks of business within the industry.

One of the most highly-anticipated events for the VBKOM team is the annual MASUP Year-end Function, and this year attendees were not disappointed. MASUP arranged for the attendees to board the Rovos Rail, where they were transported to a time portrayed in old British and Hollywood movies like “Murder on the Orient Express” and “Death on the Nile”.

Image: Rovos Rail train, MASUP 2023 Year-end Function

From VBKOM, George Olivier, Business Development Executive, Strauss Oosthuizen, Technical Delivery Executive, Tiaan Ackermann, Business Development Manager, and their wives attended the year-end function.

Image: Rovos Rail Train (Far left), George and Christel Olivier (Left), Strauss and Phylma Oosthuizen (Right), and Tiaan and Andrea Ackermann (Far right)

Evening Highlights

The welcoming address was delivered by Mr Riaan Gilfillan, the President of MASUP and the Mining Manager at Storm Mountain Diamonds. He highlighted the history, importance, and legacy of MASUP and the role it has played in the success of the Department of Mining Engineering at the University of Pretoria. A special tribute and thank you was paid to Professor Ronny Webber-Youngman for his contribution over the years to the University of Pretoria, MASUP, and the mining industry at large.

Northam Platinum’s Mr Willie Theron, the Operations Executive, delivered the keynote address. He focussed on the importance of mining as a contributor to the South African economy from a monetary as well as a job creation perspective. He then highlighted current challenges, but also opportunities, and latched onto the UP Mining Engineering concept of “Imagineers” – visionaries who are vital to ensure the success of the mining industry for the future.

The attendees were treated to a five-course food and wine pairing experience.

Image: Mr. Willie Theron, Northam Platinum's Operations Executive (Far left) delivered the keynote address. Mr. Riaan Gilfillan, President of MASUP and the Mining Manager at Storm Mountain Diamonds, delivered the welcoming address (Middle). Prof. Ronny Webber-Youngman (Right)

Image: Rovos Rail (Left), George and Christel Olivier (Right)

Image: Tiaan and Andrea Ackermann (Left), Strauss and Phylma Oosthuizen (Right)

Honouring Professor Ronny Webber-Youngman

VBKOM would like to take this opportunity to thank Professor Ronny Webber-Youngman for his 16 years of service as the Head of the Department of Mining Engineering at the University of Pretoria. Prof. Webber-Youngman has become synonymous with the Department and has taken it to new heights as, under his leadership, it has become recognised for excellence in research and education both locally and internationally.

We wish Prof. Webber-Youngman well in his well-deserved retirement and look forward to meeting with him during the many MASUP networking opportunities in the years to come.

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