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Nompumezo Gubevu | South Africa


What do you do in your home country and what do you hope to do upon your return? In particular, with the integration of your experiences here?

I mostly organize exhibitions for a company called Artec. I create exhibition briefs, such as the last one that was called “Rethinking Boundaries”. Here, I researched the issues at hand and found the artists to participate in the exhibition. Then I send out the invitations, I write funding proposals, and work on putting together the programming events. Sometimes we work on organizing workshops or renting out our space as well.

What I hope to learn is connected to the leadership development that we are working on. This is where I can link what I am learning about myself to the work that I do. For example, learning that one of my strengths is adaptability, and understanding and identifying this and when it is helpful or not helpful in my work. Taking that home and identifying how this can help me with my work there is a big part of what I want to bring back with me after the fellowship. Also, the class on mission statements and how our mission statements are meeting or not meeting that work that we do was very helpful.

What is your favorite thing about your home country? How about Philadelphia?

My favorite thing about South Africa is the outdoors. If I am not indoors doing art, you will most likely find me at the beach or in the forest, basically doing any outdoor activity. That is what I love about South Africa, it is so space to explore and there is so much to do.

My favorite thing about Philly is the architecture, all of the row houses. I love walking around the streets and seeing the murals. I went to the art museum and I love that as well. It is so big and there is so much to see. I also love how the people here are so nice and so polite.

Do you have any hobbies or an interesting fact you wish to share about yourself?

Like I mentioned in what I love about my home country, I love being outdoors. I love to run.

I also love décor and decorating, in a past life I think I was an architect. I like spaces and reimagining a space. I also like to read, specifically science fiction. I love watching movies, Star Wars and movies like that, and I love animation. I also like sculpting little objects.

If I were to come to your home country, what is the first thing I should eat?

My favorite dish, which is an acquired taste, is called umphokoqo. It is a dish made out of maize meal in a powder and you make it with what is called amasi, which is like buttermilk. You mix these together and other people like to add things to it but I think that it is best in its simplest form.

Also, Braai, everyone enjoys it as a universal South African thing. We even have a national Braai day.