from the classroom…

Our first year Student Forum representatives have given us some insight on what took place in and around the classroom in the month of February!

“With a very busy first few weeks at the Academy, we definitely had very little time for sitting still. I absolutely loved the a|CREATE workshop we did a with Alex-Deene and the a|CREATE team. This workshop was full of drama and creativeness. We also got to spend some time with Markus in the classroom and that was definitely one of my highlights.

We have already worked at a few events since we had our training with Shake and Serve and if there was one thing I learnt thus far, is that you can plan as much as you want but the event will never go exactly to schedule. It is very important that you are able to adapt and think on your feet. I’ve learnt that staying calm and positive while doing your work, is key!

Our practical hours are tough! I think it is a really good perspective on what we are getting ourselves into for the next three years. My biggest observation on what makes or breaks a shift, is the manager’s attitude and behaviour. When managers are calm, relaxed, supportive and kind, times flies and it feels like a safe/happy environment to work in.

Wow, we are so fortunate to be studying on the beautiful Lourensford Wine Estate. It is always green and there is always a flow of people through the different shops and restaurants at any time of the day. Wunderkind is the perfect treat for us on a warm Summer’s day – they have such good ice cream!

Even though the first few weeks have already brought so much excitement for us, I am really looking forward to understand another part of a business environment that very few people have the opportunity to experience. I look forward to grow here at The Aleit Academy and find my feet. I know it will be quite the journey, but it’s definitely worth it to find my spot in the industry.”

– Amber Charles


“My first few weeks at the Academy have been superb. I liked how we kicked off the year with some information days, meeting all the staff members and getting to know the campus. We even had a braai with all the first years! During this time, we had the opportunity to meet our fellow class mates in more of a casual setting, which actually made it easier to make new friends, compared to when you jump straight into formal lectures with people you haven’t really met.

We had a few Shake & Serve training days with Alicia and Simoné, which allowed us to be a little more prepared for those daunting practical hours that lie ahead. Thereafter lectures started, which I was very excited about, as I couldn’t wait to get to the course work.

In-between classes, we still had a few creative workshops here and there as well as a group CrossFit session in Stellenbosch. We learnt the ins and outs of making mood boards and spent a day at the a|CREATE Warehouse where we were put to the test by making decorative hats – which was so much fun for all of us!

Our ever-changing schedule is busy, but manageable. For us, having most Monday’s and Friday’s off really helps with the long hours on the weekend with practical hours. All in all, it has really been a positive start to the year for all of us.

I have only worked at two events thus far, both of which were weddings. One at Bakenhof Winelands Estate and the other at Quoin Rock. Both these experiences were very positive for me. While doing my practical hours, I do get the opportunity to experience so many different things. I loved the excitement and all emotions that the guests experience during the key moments of the weddings. It’s moments that cannot be described.

Doing these practical hours as more of a “networking opportunity” than I realized. You receive such a big opportunity here to work alongside the Coordinators, Venue Managers, Industry stakeholders and staff members, while seeing them in action – bonus!

At both the weddings I got to meet suppliers that also studied at The Aleit Academy, who also experienced what we are going through and so much more. Their tips will forever be cherished!

I am looking forward to getting to know and to work alongside creative, likeminded people who have a passion for creating sought after, memorable and impactful experiences. I’m also very excited for more interesting and creative workshops – I love learning and experiencing new things!

Lastly, I have to brag about the beautiful setting of our campus. Campus life is great! It truly is an inviting space. I have not once felt scared or intimidated when needing to go speak to someone. I enjoy the freedom we have to explore Lourensford before class, during breaks and after class of course. It’s truly special to know that we are not narrowed to a specific area.

I really like the fact that we have access to a water dispenser and a small little kitchen where we can make coffee or smoothies during class times. That is really a big positive. It makes us feel more at home and so much more comfortable on campus.

My favourite part about being here, one would ask? I love how everyone is so stylish and well put together! It really creates a great image that I’m proud to be a part of.”

– Taynité Gonsalves