Red & Yellow Rockstars: Caitlin Ferreira
Our lecturers are the ones who make it all happen here, so we thought you’d like to get to know them a little bit better. First up, meet Caitlin Ferreira.
Over and above imparting the obvious knowledge and skills to your students, what is that ‘one thing’ you want to teach them?
Opening minds! I start all of my classes by discussing three interesting things that are happening in the world around us. The topics range from marketing to politics to changes in our economic environment. I’ve found that the students really respond to this and the conversations that naturally evolve are indicative of minds being opened to the world around them.
What is the best thing about what you teach?
Bringing marketing to life. I always start my marketing programmes by asking students what they think marketing is and ultimately the word advertising is thrown around by everybody and I spend the rest of the course showing them how much more marketing actually is. Pulling in real-life examples and expanding beyond the theory helps students to understand what real world marketing is like.
What are you most proud of in your career?
Getting my academic writing published and having my research presented at conferences in Portugal, New Zealand and America. (And fingers crossed for getting accepted to conferences in Canada, Italy & Scotland next year!)
Best example of a student whose life you’ve turned around/transformed?
I recently had some first year students approach me and tell me how much they’ve learnt through my interesting facts discussions in class each week. While often being completely off-topic, these discussions seem to be opening the eyes of students to the realities of living in South Africa today.
Before becoming a lecturer, were you involved in industry?
I’ve been a freelance marketing and research consultant for about five years.
Do you have any side-line ventures?
I do quite a bit of freelance consulting, particularly related to research consulting. I have completed a number of research projects for different clients which has given me great exposure to a number of different industries. I also do some guest lecturing for other universities.
I obtained a Business Science Honours degree in Marketing and Economics at UCT and then went on to complete a B.Com Honours in Financial Analysis and Portfolio Management also at UCT (Side note: The entire reason for doing a finance degree was because a marketing lecturer told me that I would need to be able to speak the finance language if I wanted to be taken seriously as a marketer in the boardroom. Challenge accepted.) After finishing up with finance, I completed my Masters in Business Science in Marketing, also at UCT. In 2016 I began my PhD journey at Luleå University of Technology in Luleå, Sweden. Fingers crossed this will be finished in 2020.