Alinafe Thupa: Illuminating Paths in Development Finance at Stellenbosch Business School
Alinafe Thupa, a seasoned professional with over a decade in energy and mining consulting, found her calling amplified through Stellenbosch Business School's Development Finance course. The modular structure at Stellenbosch Business School provided her the flexibility to seamlessly integrate studies with her ongoing career, making it a strategic choice for this dynamic individual.
Before diving into the world of Development Finance, Alinafe holds a BCom in Economics and Finance from the University of Cape Town (UCT), adorned with Honours in Financial Analysis and Portfolio Management. Her current role as a management consultant revolves around navigating challenges for Energy and Materials companies across the continent. It is not just a job for Alinafe; it is a passion for solving complex problems, from growth strategy to steering through the intricacies of the energy transition.
"In the medium term, I aim to further develop my futurism and foresight skills," Alinafe said. "My goal is to integrate these capabilities into business analysis as an evolutionary development of the role."
Looking ahead, she envisions playing a direct role in shaping energy policy and contributing to sustainable energy project development and execution. Based in Johannesburg, Alinafe sees her career landscape as a catalyst for positive growth in Africa. Recognising the intricate link between energy access and positive development outcomes, including economic growth, health, education, and poverty reduction. She aims to contribute to the development of sustainable energy sectors that meet the diverse needs of Africans while minimising environmental impact.
"My experience in class was amazing – the lecturers really cared about their subject matter and created opportunities for discourse on development and development finance topics in the class. My classmates came from all over the continent, with different professional backgrounds and life experience, which made for rich discussions where I learnt a lot."
She emphasises the programme's impact on her perspective, narrowing down developmental topics and fostering a pragmatic approach to Africa's complex challenges.
In parting, Alinafe shares three lessons from her Stellenbosch Business School journey – prioritise completion over perfection, maintain a slow and consistent pace, and keep an open mind. Aspiring students are encouraged to embrace pragmatism, commitment, and a receptive mindset to fully benefit from the enriching experience at Stellenbosch Business School.