Alumni Profile: Mariska Morris
Mariska’s love of language and writing inspired her to become a journalist. Her time in the industry has sparked a passion for the disability sector and helping new patients with spinal cord injury learn more about their disability. She graduated in 2016 with her Honours degree in Media theory and practice. She then started working at a publishing house in Johannesburg called Charmont Media Global. Charmont Media Global publishes two B2B magazines, FOCUS on Transport (a commercial transport and logistics magazine) and SHEQ Management (an occupational health and safety magazine), runs a small lifestyle website Cyberstoep and a lifestyle publication for people with mobility impairments, Rolling Inspiration, on behalf of the QuadPara Association of South Africa (QASA). Her official title is journalist, but since she is part of a team of only 13 people (including sales and finance), the journalists have a tremendous amount of responsibility and often have to complete various tasks. Therefore, she additionally manages Rolling Inspiration. Rolling Inspiration, which is her main responsibility, now reaches more than 100 000 people a month.
Mariska’s ultimate goal is to further her studies and enter the field of media research focusing on the language used to speak about minority groups and how that might affect or influence the dialogues around disability. Mariska says that during her time at UCT she was able to cultivate an independent work ethic and that has enabled her to take initiative in the workplace. She explains that she really enjoyed every moment of being part for the department. She reminisces and says, “from sipping cheap filter coffee on the lawns debating with my peers to long hours designing mock magazines for course work. Every moment was filled with adventure and the opportunity to learn and meet interesting people”. Her advice for incoming students is, “take as many courses as possible and join in a few activities you never imagined yourself taking. You’ll find new passions, interest, hobbies and it is often the most unexpected of courses that empower you in the workplace”.