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SU Museum wins award for promoting multilingualismhttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=9247SU Museum wins award for promoting multilingualismCorporate Communication and Marketing/Korporatiewe Kommunikasie en Bemarking - Sandra Mulder<p>Stellenbosch University Museum has been awarded the 2022 National PanSALB (Pan South African Language Board) Multilingualism Award for using and promoting multilingualism at a higher education institute.<br></p><p>The SU Museum accepted this prestigious award at a PanSALB ceremony in Johannesburg on 15 June. SU and two other universities, the University of Venda and Unisa's Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) division, were the nominees for this award in the education category.<br></p><p>This award, among others, recognises the SU Museum's commitment to marketing its programmes as wide as possible to cater for its diverse audiences and make the Museum inclusive. The Museum presents all its marketing communication in English, Afrikaans and isiXhosa.<br></p><p>The PanSALB award will now hang next to the Museum's other two awards received in 2018 – the Cultural Affairs Award for “Best Museum Promoting Social Inclusion" and the Sustainable Development Award from the Cape Winelands District Municipality.<br></p><p>Thrilled and excited about this award for promoting multilingualism, Bongani Mgijima, Director of the SU Museum, revealed that the Museum had decided years ago to have programmes in line with the University's Vision 2040 and be more socially inclusive while promoting community involvement.<br></p><p>“To achieve this and broaden the Museum's social impact in the community, we decided to circulate all the museum's marketing collateral in English, Afrikaans and IsiXhosa since these are the main languages spoken in the Western Cape," said Mgijima.<br></p><p>With the Museum's enhancement of multilingualism and social inclusion, the Museum was a strong candidate for this PanSALB award to individuals, institutes or organisations that excelled in the “promotion, protection and preservation of all official languages including Khoi, Nama and San languages as well South African Sign Language". <br></p><p>Besides the Education category, the other award categories were Language and Literature, Language Activist Award, Media, Youth, Government or Public Sector, Technology and Business, Music, Translation and Interpretation and the Chairperson's lifetime achievement awards.<br></p><p>Except for SU Museum's multilingual marketing material, it also has other programmes promoting diverse cultures and languages like the African Drumming Tuesdays, which enables tourists and locals to learn the skills of playing the African drum.<br></p><p>Additionally, the Museum has active public educational programmes to attract diverse audiences. The Access to Visual Arts programme is the Museum's flagship social impact programme aimed at school learners, paying for students from disadvantaged schools to be able to broaden learners' access to the University Museum and introduce learners to art. <br></p><p>The Wednesday Art Walkabout is an initiative of the University Museum to educate and share its art collections with the public, while the Just Conversations series focuses on key issues such as intergenerational struggles, identity, silences in African history, the role of archives and museums as it relates to social justice to name but a few of the issues that activists, academics, and practitioners will discuss.<br></p><p>Last but not least, the Ubuntu Dialogues Project, a collaboration that centres around transnational dialogue and engagement among students, faculty and community partners in South Africa and the United States. <br></p><p>According to Mgijima, the circulation of marketing collateral by the Museum in the three national languages is testimony to the Museum's commitment to market its programmes as wide as possible to cater for its diverse audience and make the Museum more inclusive to all.<br></p><p>For more information on the University Museum's programmes, visit: <a href="https://www.facebook.com/UsMuseum">https://www.facebook.com/UsMuseum</a></p><p>Main picture: Museum staff with the PanSALB award.<br></p><p>Photo: Sandra Mulder<br></p><p><br><br></p>
First cohort of Future17 initiative complete course http://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=9235First cohort of Future17 initiative complete course Corporate Communication and Marketing/Korporatiewe Kommunikasie en Bemarking - Sandra Mulder<p>A diverse group of 130 international students from Brazil, China, the United Kingdom and South Africa has made history by completing the <a href="/english/SUInternational/future17-sustainable-development-goals-programme">Future17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Challenge short course</a> – a first of its kind for Stellenbosch University (SU).<br></p><p>This course was hosted by the SDG/2063 Impact Hub at Stellenbosch University International (SUI). The Impact Hub aims to promote the United Nations' 2030 Agenda and its sustainable development goals (SDGs), alongside the African Union's Agenda 2063 for a prosperous Africa within the context of international higher education. <br></p><p>The 38 SU students who formed part of the cohort celebrated their achievement informally at an event hosted by SUI in Stellenbosch on 9 June. This special gathering of SU students preceded the official global celebration on 13 June. The other participants were from the <a href="https://www.exeter.ac.uk/about/transforming-education/without-borders/future17/">University of Exeter</a><span lang="EN-US" style="text-decoration:underline;"> (UK)</span>, the <a href="https://www.cuhk.edu.hk/english/index.html">Chinese University of Hong Kong</a> and the <a href="https://www5.usp.br/english/institutional/">University of São Paulo</a> (Brazil). </p><p>The SU group, comprising final year undergraduate as well as postgraduate students, were praised for the innovation, commitment, professionalism and outstanding ambassadorship for SU that they displayed since the launch of the course in March. <br></p><p>The prestigious three-month Future17 SDG Challenge Course is unique because it is driven by a consortium of universities from four countries, assisted by global challenge partners. The aim is to educate and equip students with the knowledge and skills to find innovative ways to turn sustainable development goals into reality, said Corina du Toit, Programme Manager: SDG/2063 Impact Hub, and academic lead for the course.<br></p><p>Among the guests at the SUI celebration was Dr Nico Elema, Director of the <a href="/english/SUInternational/Pages/Centre-for-collaboration-in-Africa.aspx">Centre for Collaboration in Africa</a> at <a href="/english/SUInternational/Pages/default.aspx">SUI</a>. He shared his reflections on the programme and congratulated the students and mentors for overcoming the challenges of the new course, as well as streamlining the processes for the next cohorts. “You have walked the journey with us, we figured out things, and we all learnt many lessons. So, thank you for contributing positively and being ambassadors for the University. You made us proud."<img src="/english/PublishingImages/Lists/dualnews/My%20Items%20View/Future17SDG_2.jpg" alt="Future17SDG_2.jpg" class="ms-rtePosition-2" style="margin:5px;width:500px;height:333px;" /> </p><p>Commenting on the effectiveness of the programme, Dr Munya Saruchera, senior lecturer and interim Director of SU's <a href="https://www.aidscentre.sun.ac.za/">Africa Centre for HIV and AIDS Management</a> in the World of Work, added: “I think the coming together of different universities reflected the microcosm level of how different countries can work together on this global agenda (SDGs). It was interesting how the mentors and students from different cultures and environments engaged effectively." </p><p><strong>Educate and equip</strong></p><p>These SDGs are at the heart of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development – the blueprint for partnerships, peace and prosperity for people and the planet – adopted by all United Nations (UN) member states. (For more information, visit the <a href="https://www.undp.org/sustainable-development-goals#:~:text=The%20Sustainable%20Development%20Goals%20%28SDGs%29%2c%20also%20known%20as%20the%2cpeople%20enjoy%20peace%20and%20prosperity.">UN's Agenda 2030 and the SDGs</a>.)</p><p>Aligned with the 2030 Agenda, the Future17 Course focuses on the UN's SDGs, adopted by 195 UN member nations in 2015, as a framework to help find solutions for the global and interdisciplinary challenges we face while building participants' key employability, critical thinking, hybrid and remote working, and presentation skills. Participants used collaborative and innovative ways to approach challenges, working with the partner universities and mentors assigned by the different institutions.<br></p><p>The SDG challenge partners comprise organisations like NGOs, institutions and companies that conceptualised challenges for the course. Challenges included creating a digital strategy to promote the SDGs to university students, doing market research for urban farms, or recycling soap from hotel chains to create jobs for communities, said Du Toit. <br></p><p>She praised the students for their performance with the assignments. “I sat in on many presentations and was very impressed by the professional standard and quality of work put forward by your groups. Considering that this was a pilot project, we were unsure what to expect – and you certainly helped set the bar very high for the next offerings." <br></p><p>At the SUI celebration event, students had the opportunity to share their course experience with the guests. Encapsulating all the students' experiences, <strong>Sharon Sambaza</strong> (LLM) said: “The Future17 short course was nothing short of a roller coaster, and it was quite an enjoyable ride! I chose to enrol in the course because of my keen interest in issues relating to sustainable development and engaging in a learning experience with students in various parts of the world. My experience during the course was both challenging and rewarding. We learned interdisciplinary concepts crucial in finding innovative solutions to problem-solving, such as design thinking and prototyping."</p><p><strong>Jack Potter </strong>expressed his gratitude for being exposed to the course: “By doing this course, I was exposed to tasks and engagements that I otherwise would not have been. I could learn from and work with people from around the globe who all share a like-minded passion for sustainable development. In the coming years, I will apply this newly gained knowledge practically in conserving wilderness areas and protecting wildlife." </p><p> </p><ul><li><a href="https://forms.office.com/Pages/ResponsePage.aspx?id=Azv6pjwKWEKEM6Eg3_zTSOvhNUaFqrJNn9eINYP9sBBURU9PSlM2VkRFQ1BFRzlXS0NOQ1VOMUhSRi4u">Applications</a> for the next round of the Future17 short course can be submitted until <strong>25 July 2022</strong>. For more information about the course, click <a href="/english/SUInternational/future17-sustainable-development-goals-programme">here</a>.</li></ul><p> </p><p><strong>Photographer: </strong>Stefan Els<br></p><p> </p><p>​<br></p>
ESI off to good start to develop scholarship and partnerships in Africahttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=9113ESI off to good start to develop scholarship and partnerships in AfricaSU International<p>Skills training following the completion of a doctorate is critical to enable early-career researchers to become research leaders. Yet very few African universities offer postdoctoral training, in many instances due to a lack of senior, qualified staff to provide the necessary support. Moreover, early-career researchers from Africa face additional challenges such as a lack of access to resources at their home institutions, and a lack of mentors and supervisors. Where postdoctoral posts do exist, they tend to be poorly paid.<br></p><p>To help build Africa's researcher population and promote scientific and research excellence on the continent, SU International's Africa Centre for Scholarship (ACS) launched the Emerging Scholars Initiative (ESI) in 2020. The ESI is a collaborative project that will see several multidisciplinary joint schools hosted with partners of Stellenbosch University (US) across the African continent. In doing so, it will draw on the experiences of the ACS's Joint Schools in Africa programme, of which the ESI serves as an extension, as well as the flagship African Doctoral Academy (ADA).</p><p>Following Covid-related delays, ESI started delivering on its brief in 2021 by co-hosting three virtual joint schools with Strathmore University (Kenya), the University of Lagos (Nigeria) and the University of Rwanda respectively. Approximately 200 delegates were taught by more than 20 facilitators from both SU and partner universities. The schools focused on two streams – one for PhD students and another for early-career staff members identified as emerging scholars by their own institutions. Courses addressed research methodology, supervision, academic writing and publishing, as well as generic skills, depending on individual institutions' needs and priorities. The programmes were co-designed by SU facilitators and facilitators from the partner/host institutions. </p><p>More joint schools are in the pipeline for 2022 to further deliver on the ESI's mandate of providing affordable yet quality competency-based learning in support of scholarship development and career training. This mandate is also well aligned with the ACS's overall objective, namely to contribute to the development of the continent and its people by connecting new and emerging scholars and creating opportunities for research and higher education teaching and learning to thrive. <br><br></p><p>​<br></p>
New CCA entities to inspire African collaboration http://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=9104New CCA entities to inspire African collaboration SU International<p>​<span style="text-align:justify;">At its annual strategic planning towards the end of January, SU International's Centre for Collaboration in Africa (CCA) chose as its motto for the year “Inspiring African collaboration". This the Centre will achieve, among others, through two new entities: the AUDA-NEPAD Centre of Excellence in Science, Technology and Innovation (AUDA-NEPAD CoE-STI) and the Sustainable Development Impact Hub (SDG/2063 Hub).</span></p><p style="text-align:justify;"><strong>Homegrown innovations for homegrown solutions</strong></p><p style="text-align:justify;">The AUDA-NEPAD CoE-STI was jointly established by the African Union Development Agency, the South African Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) and Stellenbosch University (SU) in June 2021. The aim is to leverage the research and science capabilities of the African continent to upscale and commercialise homegrown innovations, thereby responding to Africa's development priorities. Critically, the centre seeks to support the implementation of the African Union's Agenda 2063 through science-backed evidence-based innovations. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">The CCA's Dr Nico Elema serves as lead expert at the CoE-STI, while Simohn Engelbrecht is responsible for coordinating the upscale of identified innovations. To date, 35 homegrown South African innovations have been identified. These all emanate from well-established SU and CSIR programmes. Based on widely tested and proven technologies and techniques, the innovations are ready for upscaling or commercialisation across the continent. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">Initial innovation categories earmarked for upscaling include advanced agriculture and food, health, water-related networks, biosciences, e-government, information and cybersecurity, aquaculture and agro-processing. (Look out for further articles and progress updates on the respective innovations.) </p><p style="text-align:justify;"><strong>Advocating for overall sustainability</strong></p><p style="text-align:justify;">The SDG/2063 Hub, in turn, was established at the end of 2021. Managed by Corina du Toit, the hub seeks to use SU's global network of partnerships and consortia to advocate for both the United Nations' sustainable development goals (SDGs) and the African Union's Agenda 2063 goals in the international higher education sector. At the same time, it aims to raise awareness in the broader SU community of both sets of sustainability goals, as well as SU's role in promoting them. To this end, the SDG/2063 Hub will offer sustainability literacy interventions for SU students, being the thought leaders and policymakers of the future. Another key activity will be to collect sustainability data, measure impact and consolidate resources. One current initiative that is enjoying special attention is the drafting of SU's <em>Times Higher Education</em> impact report. The report, which is due in October, will provide an overview of<strong> </strong>the University's contribution to the overarching sustainability goals. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">To help give effect to the hub's objectives, SU students and mentors (academic staff) are participating in Future17, a virtual SDG-focused challenge presented by QS University Rankings, Exeter University, the Chinese University of Hong Kong and the University of São Paulo. The programme started in mid-February and runs until late May, with a second instalment to commence in September. </p><p style="text-align:left;">* For further information on these initiatives, contact the respective programme managers. For the AUDA-NEPAD CoE-STI, e-mail Dr Nico Elema (<a href="mailto:ne@sun.ac.za">ne@sun.ac.za</a>) or Simohn Engelbrecht (<a href="mailto:simohn@sun.ac.za">simohn@sun.ac.za</a>). For the SDG/2063 Hub, e-mail Corina du Toit (<a href="mailto:corina@sun.ac.za">corina@sun.ac.za</a>). </p><p style="text-align:left;"><br></p><p style="text-align:left;"><img src="/english/PublishingImages/Lists/dualnews/My%20Items%20View/Sustainability.jpg" alt="Sustainability.jpg" style="margin:5px;width:553px;" /><br></p><p>Image from Future17 Course <br></p><p style="text-align:justify;"><br></p><p style="text-align:justify;"><br></p><p style="text-align:justify;"><br></p><p>​<br></p>
Kerwin Noemdo: Proud Paralympian with two degreeshttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=9071Kerwin Noemdo: Proud Paralympian with two degreesCorporate Communication and Marketing/Korporatiewe Kommunikasie en Bemarking - Sandra Mulder<p></p><p>Well-known Matie athlete Kerwin Noemdo's dreams of becoming a Paralympian athlete with two university degrees became a reality when he received his second qualification at Stellenbosch University's (SU) April graduation ceremonies.<br></p><p><br></p><p>Noemdo – the Maties Parasport Sportsman of 2019 who represented South Africa at the Tokyo Paralympic Games in September last year – was awarded a Postgraduate Diploma in HIV/Aids Management from SU's Africa Centre for HIV/Aids Management. In 2017, he received a BSc degree in Conservation Ecology.</p><p><br></p><p>“It's a nice and a proud feeling to know that I have successfully completed something I am committed to. I've always wanted to be a Paralympian and have two degrees, which happened for me. It is something I am proud of," said Noemdo.<br></p><p><br></p><p>He was born on 12 September 1994 with a smaller and deformed right hand due to the umbilical cord wrapping around it in the womb. His right hand was amputated a few months after birth. He has achieved remarkable success from a young age, participating in rugby and later in athletics.</p><p><br></p><p>In 2021, he registered for the postgraduate diploma, a flagship online programme of the Centre for HIV/Aids Management. The academic workload and his sporting obligations quickly put his self-discipline and perseverance to the test. “It was quite difficult," Noemdo recalled.</p><p><br></p><p>Apart from many assignments that took up most of his time, he also had to make time for his own shot-put exercise programme with his coach, coaching at two schools and giving private coaching lessons.</p><p><br></p><p>“I had to work on my assignments after hours, during weekends or late at night. But it's the life I chose, and I did it," said Noemdo, adding that he returned from Tokyo earlier to complete one of his assignments. </p><p><br></p><p><strong>From Bellville to Stellenbosch</strong></p><p>Hailing from Bellville, Noemdo moved to Stellenbosch in 2011 and joined Paul Roos Gymnasium. At the time, he was a good rugby player and para-athlete who had already participated in his first national athletics championship in 2008. </p><p><br></p><p>In the year he moved to Stellenbosch, he was selected for the International Wheelchair and Amputee Sports Games held in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates. “It was a moment I will never forget – to represent my country and receive the green and gold South African kit with my name and the Protea emblem," Noemdo recalled.</p><p><br></p><p>After that, he represented South Africa at several other international sporting events, including the Tokyo Paralympic Games, where he participated as one of South Africa's leading para-athletes in the codes of discus and shot-put, placing fourth in shot-put.</p><p><br></p><p>“The Tokyo Games was my biggest sporting achievement so far. I ended just one place from a medal position, missing it by 35 cm," said Noemdo.</p><p><br></p><p>He is motivated to improve on his fourth position and will now put all his time and energy into training and coaching. “I am going full steam ahead for the 2024 Paralympic Games in Paris. It is two and a half years away. And if everything goes well, I can also participate in the 2028 Paralympic Games in Los Angeles."</p><p><br></p><p><strong>Coaching comes naturally</strong></p><p>Noemdo does not have any immediate career plans related to his qualifications. </p><p><br></p><p>"I will focus on my sport and keep coaching at two schools and privately. Coaching comes naturally to me and runs in the family. My grandfather was part of the coaching team of the first Springbok Sevens team, and my uncle coached provincial rugby teams. I have an analytical and a coaching brain," Noemdo said.</p><p><br></p><p>He added that one of the pleasures of coaching is when your athletes develop and improve their performance. “I really enjoy that. I like helping other athletes to achieve their goals and seeing the improvement and the growth – not only as athletes but also as people."</p><p><br></p><p>Going forward, Noemdo will carry with him the life lessons he has learned over the years in Stellenbosch and the lifelong friends he made in school and university. “To be a Matie student shaped me as a person. I hope that I can one day inspire and shape other individuals and student-athletes or just people in general in every aspect of life," he said. <br></p><p><strong>Photographer:</strong> Stefan Els<br></p><p><br></p><p>​<br></p>
Inspiring collaboration on the continenthttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=8952Inspiring collaboration on the continentMmanape Hlungwane ​<p><em>​SU International's Centre for Collaboration in Africa (CCA) strengthens ties between Stellenbosch University and its partner institutions across Africa through bilateral agreements, diverse thematic research networks, student and staff mobility as well as programme development support. </em></p><p style="text-align:justify;">The team at the Centre for Collaboration in Africa (CCA), at SU International, are devoted to inspiring high-impact collaboration among African universities and for Stellenbosch University (SU) to cultivate and nurture its relationships with other  African institutions. This is achieved through bilateral partnerships, thematic research networks, student and staff mobility, and programme development support. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">The portfolio of <strong>33 bilateral agreements</strong> managed by the CCA, most of them with other African universities, provide SU staff, students and postdoctoral fellows with a framework for peer-to-peer collaboration.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Through the <strong>Africa Collaboration Grant (ACG)</strong>, the CCA provides seed-funding for full-time SU staff and postdoctoral fellows to establish or strengthen academic collaboration with one or more partners at institutions elsewhere on the continent. The ACG also supports postgraduate students to attend conferences in other African countries and support for Emerging Scholars to attend workshops. As of 2016, the grant prioritises projects with SU's bilateral partners in Africa, as well as work within the Africa Research Universities Alliance (ARUA). </p><p style="text-align:justify;">In pursuit of SU's strategic theme of purposeful partnerships and inclusive networks, the CCA also runs programmes under the <strong>Intra-Africa Academic Mobility Scheme</strong>. These programmes are aimed at improving scholarships to post-graduate students and support staff exchange  through enhanced mobility between African countries. The scheme is funded by the European Commission and the programme offering is developed and implemented in conjunction with the Association of African Universities. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">The <strong>Partners Enhancing Resilience for People Exposed to Risk (Periperi U)</strong>, in turn, is an alliance of 12 African universities who draws on diverse perspectives to support disaster risk reduction research and capacity development across the continent. Established in 2005, Periperi U seeks to enhance human capacity to integrate risk reduction with critical developmental sectors and programmes. The ultimate aim is to build African expertise to address and solve the continent's disaster risk issues. The partnership follows an outreach approach, empowering communities to be custodians of their own knowledge. It also invests strategically in academic programmes and short courses for professionals, and in the development and dissemination of research to guide disaster risk decisions and policymaking in African countries. The CCA is the proud host of the Periperi U secretariat, who engages with major stakeholders – including the United Nations, the World Bank and the African Union – to coordinate the alliance's joint projects on risk mitigation, resilience and sustainability. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">The CCA also hosts the <strong>SDG/2063 Hub</strong> – a sustainable development impact hub that promotes both the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the African Union's Agenda 2063 in international higher education. The SDG/2063 Hub aims to achieve this through raising awareness, creating partnerships, and identifying and strengthening the wider SU community's contribution to both sustainability agendas in Africa and beyond.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">The CCA team is no stranger to centres of excellence either. The <strong>secretariat of the</strong><strong> </strong><strong>AUDA-NEPAD Southern African Network of Water Centres of Excellence</strong> (AUDA/NEPAD SANWATCE) operates from the CCA. This network of higher education and research institutions conducts high-end scientific research and capacity development in the water and related sectors of the Southern African Development Community (SADC). AUDA-NEPAD SANWATCE received its mandate from the African Union, the African Ministers Council on Science and Technology (AMCOST) and the African Ministers Council on Water (AMCOW) in 2006. Moreover, the <strong>AUDA-NEPAD Centre of Excellence in Science, Technology and Innovation</strong> (AUDA-NEPAD CoE-STI) was recently established in partnership with SU and the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR). From the CCA, Stellenbosch University's contribution to the AUDA-NEPAD CoE in STI is facilitated. In essence, the AUDA-NEPAD CoE in STI will leverage the research and science capabilities of the continent, upscaling and commercialising homegrown innovations to respond to African development priorities.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">In addition, the CCA supports the activities of <strong>thematic faculty-based networks</strong> through programmes such as the Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture (RUFORUM), the Partnership for Africa's Next Generation of Academics (PANGeA) and the African Network for Evidence-to-Action in Disability (AfriNEAD).</p><p style="text-align:justify;">The CCA is led by the Director Dr Nico Elema, with a team of professional practitioners. Here, Ms Norma Derby, act as programme manager of Africa Partnership Development with Ms Sue-Vicky Brandt administering the ACG  as well as administering the finances administrator for the office. In addition, Ms Simohn Engelbrecht is the project coordinator of the AUDA-NEPAD CoE-STI with Ms Corina du Toit being the programme manager of the SDG/2063 Hub. In terms of the thematic research networks, Mr Alberto Francioli is the programme manager of the Periperi U secretariat, and Mr Carinus de Kock, managing projects in both Periperi U and AUDA-NEPAD SANWATCE. Capturing of CCA projects on INTERINFO, an integrated information system for internationalisation, is supported by CCA projects assistant Mr Mujahid Gabier. Moreover, interns, Ms Mmanape Hlungwane and Mr Mhlengi Khambule, both SU postgraduate students, will be assisting with all activities for 2022/23.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">For more information on Stellenbosch University's partnerships across the African Continent, visit the <a href="/english/AfricaSU/default">SU Africa platform</a>.</p><p style="text-align:justify;"><img src="/english/PublishingImages/Lists/dualnews/My%20Items%20View/CCA%20article1.jpg" alt="CCA article1.jpg" style="margin:5px;width:560px;" /><br>Design by: Mmanape Hlungwane <br></p><p style="text-align:justify;">​<br><br></p><p></p><p><br></p><p>​<br></p>
Newcomers learn about SU International’s sustainability initiatives http://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=8913Newcomers learn about SU International’s sustainability initiatives Mhlengi Khambule<p>​The Stellenbosch University (SU) Sustainable Development Impact (SDG/2063) Hub was introduced to 5 000 SU first-years on Saturday 10 February 2022. The hub is housed in SU International's Centre for Collaboration in Africa.<br></p><p>This formed part of SU's annual Social Impact Morning, which took the form of an online event. The event, a collaboration between Matie Community Service, the Social Impact Division and the Centre for Student Communities, explored how meaningful social impact could be facilitated through social entrepreneurship. * <br></p><p>The Social Impact Morning, therefore, proved a fitting occasion to expose the SU student community to the SDG/2063 Hub, which aims to promote the United Nations (UN) sustainable development goals (SDGs) as well as the African Union (AU) Agenda 2063 in higher education. It pursues this aim by raising awareness, creating partnerships, and enhancing the broader SU community's contribution to both the UN and AU sustainability agendas in Africa and beyond. </p><p> More specifically, students received information on the Future17 SDG short course, a new global, multidisciplinary and multicultural programme in sustainability. The course is presented by the <a href="https://www.exeter.ac.uk/about/transforming-education/without-borders/future17/">University of Exeter</a> (United Kingdom), <a href="https://www.qs.com/portfolio-items/future17/">QS World University Rankings</a> and a university consortium including SU, the <a href="https://www.cuhk.edu.hk/english/index.html">Chinese University of Hong Kong</a> and the University of <a href="https://www5.usp.br/english/institutional/">São Paulo</a> (Brazil).</p><p> Against the framework of the SDGs, the course will help find solutions to the world's sustainability challenges, while also improving participants' employability by building their critical thinking and presentation skills. Challenges for the programme were conceptualised by a range of SDG-Challenge partners. Participants will approach these challenges collaboratively, working with partner universities and mentors assigned by the different institutions.  <br></p><p>The inaugural edition of the programme will be presented virtually from late February to late May 2022. It is open to students from second-year level up to postgraduates, subject to selection. Students will collaborate in groups of six to eight and will present solutions to their set sustainability challenges at a showcase event at the end of the course.<br></p><p>Those accepted into the programme can look forward to taking part in a community driven by social impact and growing into truly engaged citizens and future leaders and policymakers.<br></p><p style="text-align:justify;">Eligible students are invited to apply by 20 February 2022. For more information and the enrolment form, <a href="/english/SUInternational/future17-sustainable-development-goals-programme">click here.</a> Alternatively, email programme manager Ms Corina du Toit on <a href="mailto:corina@sun.ac.za">corina@sun.ac.za</a>.</p><p style="text-align:justify;"><br></p><p style="text-align:justify;"><img src="/english/PublishingImages/Lists/dualnews/My%20Items%20View/thumbnail_image001.png" alt="thumbnail_image001.png" style="margin:5px;width:584px;" /><br></p><p> </p><p><em>* Other SU presenters at the Social Impact Morning included Renee Hector-Kannemeyer (deputy director of Social Impact, and director of Matie Community Service), Students' Representative Council Member Precious Nhamo (responsible for the Social Impact and Innovation portfolio) and the LaunchLab's Leana Kotze and Abby Stern. Busisiwe Chauke represented 4-Good, a valued SU partner in student volunteer initiatives, while Vere Shaba, one of the top 100 businesswomen in Africa, urged students to get behind causes that would contribute to a better world.</em><em> </em><br><br></p><p>​<br></p>
Periperi U/UNDP course boosts disaster risk capacity in Sahelhttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=8830Periperi U/UNDP course boosts disaster risk capacity in SahelSU International<p>​Periperi U, an African universities partnership aimed at building local disaster risk management capacity, recently hosted a four-week online course on climate and disaster risk financing (CDRF). The course, co-designed with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), specifically focused on the Sahel region of Africa – the semiarid region extending from Senegal eastward to Sudan.<br></p><p>From 16 November to 9 December 2021, experts from Stellenbosch University (SU) (home to the Periperi U secretariat), the University of Antananarivo (Madagascar) and industry collaborated to present the programme. Teaching modes included virtual classrooms, self-paced study and group work, and all components were offered in both French and English.</p><p>“The CDRF course was the second short-course collaboration between the UNDP and Stellenbosch University," explains Alberto Francioli, programme manager at the Periperi U secretariat. “It focused on government officials and practitioners in the Sahel region, which is considered one of the most vulnerable parts of the world. The aim was to build the region's capacity to increase resilience against the financial shocks and impacts associated with disasters and climate change." The region is plagued by food shortages and famine, recurring droughts and fragile economies.  </p><p>“This course attests to the increasing interest in, and continent-wide acknowledgement of the importance of, understanding climate change and disaster risk to build more resilient and sustainable communities in Africa," says Francioli.  </p><p>The Sahel officials, along with representatives from the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the African Union Commission, tuned in to learn about the basic concepts of CDRF. These included an understanding of the overall landscape of climate and disaster risk financing sources at national and international level, applications of risk context studies, knowledge of CDRF instruments and their application, and weather forecasting mechanisms.<br></p><p>In the first week, participants examined the complex risk environment in Africa, and the case was made for disaster risk reduction and CDRF as essential tools in the region's risk mitigation arsenal. The United Nations' sustainable development goals were also discussed, as was the link between resource management and allocation and the climate and disaster risk issues faced across the continent.</p><p>Instruments and tools for CDRF in the African context were the focus of the second week. Using both Sahel-based and international case studies, presenters illustrated the application of these financing instruments and tools, including contingency funding and parametric insurance. In the third week, the focus shifted to the application of CDRF-based research, data and assessments to roll out evidence-based disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation and mitigation. </p><p>The final week of the course saw facilitators providing hands-on guidance on how participants could go about implementing effective CDRF strategies and actions for their respective countries.</p><p>* For more information on Periperi U's disaster risk-related short courses, go to <a href="http://www.riskreductionafrica.org/">www.riskreductionafrica.org</a> or e-mail Alberto Francioli at <a href="mailto:albertofrancioli@sun.ac.za">albertofrancioli@sun.ac.za</a>.<br></p><p>To find out more about SU International activities, visit our website: <a href="/english/SUInternational">www.sun.ac.za/international​</a>.​<br></p>
Moving human wrongs to human rights in Africahttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=8666Moving human wrongs to human rights in AfricaCorporate Communication and Marketing/Korporatiewe Kommunikasie en Bemarking - Sandra Mulder<p>​​​Partaking in the historical journey of moving human wrongs to human rights in Africa, Stellenbosch University (SU) recently hosted the African Human Rights Moot Court Competition – the largest annual gathering in Africa for students and lecturers of law.</p><p>The competition, organised by the University of Pretoria's (UP) Centre of Human Rights (CHR), involved competing law students, referred to as 'mooters', simulate a real court situation by arguing a hypothetical human rights case related to gender-based violence (GBV), gender identity, sexual minority and children rights. The mooters delivered their arguments in front of a bench of judges and prominent jurists who interrogated them on their statements. </p><p>This year, SU's Chair of Social Justice and previous South African Public Protector, Prof Thuli Madonsela, chaired the bench of judges comprising Dr Solomon Dersso, chairperson of the African Commission on Human and Peoples' Rights, Justice Angelo Matusse, previously a judge of the African Court on Human and Peoples' Rights, Dr Robert Nanima, a member of the African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child, and Prof Laurence Burgorgue-Larsen, a judge of the constitutional court of Andorra and lecturer in international law at the Sorbonne University in Paris.</p><p>To date, law faculties of 175 universities from 50 countries across Africa have participated. They gathered in 19 countries and proceeded with moot court cases in English, French and Portuguese.</p><p>Earlier this year, 60 teams from law faculties in Africa entered the competition and battled it out until eight teams were selected for the quarterfinals in Stellenbosch. For a second year, the competition took place in hybrid mode.</p><p>At the end of the finals, the presiding judges praised the finalists for demonstrating great skills, talent and the ability to think on their feet, especially in answering the judges' questions.</p><p>One of the four teams in the finals was SU's team, Megan Roos (final-year LLB) and Shaniaé Maharaj (second-last year BAccLLB), who finished as runners-up with the partnering team from the Eduardo Mondlane University in Mozambique. To read more about the SU team's achievement, click here.</p><p>The winners of the competition were the combined team of the law schools of the Félix Houphouët-Boigny University in Côte d'Ivoire and Kenyatta University in Kenya.</p><p>At the official opening, Prof Nicola Smit, Dean of SU's Faculty of Law, highlighted the Faculty's excitement to host this event in its centenary year. She also said the competition would undoubtedly contribute to participants' growth as a person. “You may even find it a little challenging, but that is what good legal education is all about, isn't it?" she said.</p><p>Along with the centenary year, the event also coincided with a momentous year for UP, celebrating the 30th anniversary of the competition and the Centre's 35th birthday. </p><p>This year's event also included the renaming of the competition to the “Christof Heyns African Human Rights Moot Court Competition". Prof Christof Heyns, a renowned human rights lawyer and founding father of the competition, passed away in March this year.</p><p>According to Prof Frans Viljoen, CHR's director, Heyns is remembered for his vision of bringing law students across the continent together that has become a reality and is going from strength to strength. Except for bringing law students together, the competition is contributing to the transformation of legal education in Africa and exposing generations of young African lawyers to the African legal human rights systems. </p><p>For this reason, winning the competition is not the primary purpose, said Viljoen. The competition  has rather become an important institution for the African human rights movements. “It is our shared resolve to pursue an Africa where we move from human wrongs to human rights. The competition has inspired people to take Moot's message further in their own lives," said Viljoen. </p><p>“SU's partnership is a testament to the University's shared commitment to collaborate with human rights movements and to help develop and transform Africa's legal system and discourse," said Smit. She also emphasised that SU supports an inclusive, progressive and transformative legal culture.</p><p>In a welcoming message at the opening dinner of the event, Prof Deresh Ramjugernath, SU's Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Learning and Teaching, welcomed moot competitions and students' benefits from participating. “Moot competitions give students on our continent a unique opportunity to experience and learn from diverse cultures, legal systems, languages and socio-economic realities," he said.</p><p>Elaborating on the benefits, he said that they promote oral communication, the ability to think on one's feet, collaborate with others and solve problems. “I am extremely thrilled about these events where students get a real, immersive action-based and experiential learning, which equips them for the experiences in the real profession," he said.</p><ul><li><p>Viljoen paid a special tribute to SU's Prof Annika Rudman, whose dedication, professionalism and adjustability as the head of the Faculty's organising committee ensured the success of the 2021 Moot Competition.</p></li></ul><p> </p><p>​ </p><p><br></p>
Two Maties among Africa’s top law students http://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=8658Two Maties among Africa’s top law students Corporate Communication and Marketing Division/Afdeling Korporatiewe Kommunikasie en Bemarking - Sandra Mulder<p>​Two law students from Stellenbosch University (SU) were recently named runners-up in the Christof Heyns African Human Rights Moot Court competition, placing their law faculty among the top four in Africa.<br></p><p>Megan Roos, an LLB student who is currently completing the last semester of her studies in Finland, and Shaniaé Maharaj, in her penultimate year of BAccLLB studies, are overwhelmed by their achievement. Not only did they reach the finals, which is an achievement in itself, but they also secured their position as one of the top two English-speaking law student teams in Africa. </p><p>Combined teams comprising English-speaking and French or Portuguese-speaking pairs competed in the final round. The SU team share their runners-up position with a Portuguese-speaking pair from the Universidade Eduardo Mondlane in Mozambique. The combined team of Kenyatta University's School of Law in Kenya and the Félix Houphouët-Boigny University in the Ivory Coast finished first.</p><p>The winners and runners-up were initially part of 13 teams (eight English, four French and one Portuguese) in the quarterfinal of the annual competition, which is organised by the University of Pretoria's Centre for Human Rights and was hosted by SU this year. All competing students simulated an actual court scenario by arguing a hypothetical human rights case in front of a bench of judges and prominent jurists, who interrogated contestants' arguments. </p><p>Taking part in the competition was a rewarding, humbling and nerve-racking experience, especially when they made the finals, Roos and Maharaj agree. “We felt rewarded for our efforts, humbled by the privilege to be part of the acclaimed competition, and nerve-racked to compete against highly talented opponents in front of a bench of renowned judges," they explain. “In every round, we learned so much from the judges' questions, and some opponents were the best orators I have ever seen," adds Maharaj. “If we hadn't internalised the feedback from the judges and our coach in every round, we would not have made it to the finals." </p><p>According to Roos, they worked hard preparing since March, when the preliminary rounds started. “A lot of time and dedication went into preparing for the moot court, during which our arguments and our teamwork were strengthened," she says. Overcoming language barriers was a huge challenge. As they were paired with a Portuguese-speaking team, they had to work closely together to formulate their arguments for the finals. Although interpreters Addie Morgado, Roberta Fox and Leo Gouveia translated their dialogues, misunderstandings and confusion inevitably occurred. “At times, it felt as if we were never going to be on the same page. It was most certainly an experience I will never forget!" says Roos. </p><p>Maharaj too found working across language barriers challenging. In fact, in the finals, this resulted in them spending five hours disagreeing before they finally came to a resolution. “During the day, I didn't know whether we would be able to finish our preparation in time, but luckily we did," she says. “It has taught me the importance of listening with the sole purpose of listening, not responding. More importantly, I was sensitised to different perspectives on gender-based violence, child marriage, gender identity and sexual orientation, and that there was more than one way of protecting people. This was so valuable and opened my mind to ideas I hadn't considered before," Maharaj continues.</p><p>Congratulating the Matie team shortly after the competition, Prof Nicola Smit, dean of SU's Faculty of Law, said: “The Faculty is exceedingly proud of Roos and Maharaj's performance throughout the competition, and for advancing to the final round. Both students committed significant time and hard work to their participation. Such work ethic and intellectual talent promise great things for Roos and Maharaj when they will soon start their professional careers. The fact that we had an SU team in the final of this competition in our Faculty's centenary and hosted in Stellenbosch may justly be considered a historic achievement."  </p><p>The SU team coach, Claire Rankin, a final-year postgraduate LLB student, also applauds the two students for surviving a very difficult final round against strong opponents and a “gruelling bench of judges". “They performed remarkably and can be proud of their achievement," Rankin says.</p><p>Maharaj is considering pursuing an LLM degree once she has completed her current programme and hopes to be an advocate one day. Roos, in turn, will start her articles at Cape Town law firm ENS Africa next year, also well on her way to realising her dreams of becoming an advocate. </p><p> </p><p>​ </p><p>​<br></p>