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Recipients of doctorates honoured at Chancellor’s Receptionhttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=4758Recipients of doctorates honoured at Chancellor’s ReceptionCorporate Communication/Korporatiewe Kommunikasie<p>​Stellenbosch University (SU) awarded a record number of 2922 degrees during the March graduation and concluded the week's celebrations by conferring honorary doctorates upon Prof Kofi Agawu and Dr Monique Nsanzabaganwa during Friday's (17 March) graduation ceremony. </p><p>The Chancellor's Reception, a special function for the recipients of doctorates and honorary doctorates, was held that afternoon at the Wallenberg Research Centre at STIAS. <br></p><p>"As I said at our last graduation ceremony this morning, we have set a new record again with 278 doctoral degrees for the 2016 academic year – 140 this week, and 138 in December last year," Prof Wim de Villiers, Rector and Vice-Chancellor at SU, said at the event, and congratulated the recipients of the doctoral degrees. "I want to thank those who have stood by you through thick and thin. Spouses and loved ones and parents and children and other family members and friends - many of whom are here today. Thank you for your support."<br></p><p>The degree Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), <em>honoris causa</em>, was awarded to Prof Kofi Agawu for his internationally acclaimed contribution to musicology and his ground-breaking research on African music. <br></p><p>Watch the video of Prof Agawu receiving his honorary degree here:</p><div class="ms-rtestate-read ms-rte-embedcode ms-rte-embedil ms-rtestate-notify"><iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/iCCzvAD18Zo" frameborder="0"></iframe> </div><p><br></p><p>"Music in Africa has a distinguished history of speaking truth to power," said Prof Stephanus Muller during his toast to Agawu's achievements. "It continues to do so in the everyday lives of many in our country and on our continent. Throughout a career spent in the most prestigious universities worldwide, Professor Agawu has done more than any other scholar of African music to interrogate tired positions, to dismantle offensive stereotypes and to reposition musical discourse about African music in a critically probing and intellectually rigorous way." <br></p><p>Prof Agawu thanked his colleagues, wife, teachers and students for their support, and referenced a Ghanaian saying which he said has shaped his life, which translates to "the time that you are living in, its thing is what is done". <br></p><p>"When I arrived in my hotel yesterday, I found a beautiful handwritten message from Prof Wim de Villiers, highlighting our mutual investments in the local and the global," he concluded. "I very much look forward to continued association with the University. Thank you once again for bestowing this great honour on me."<br></p><p>Dr Monique Nsanzabaganwa received the degree Doctor of Commerce (DComm), <em>honoris causa</em>, for her role in developing academically sound economic policies for Rwanda, for her contribution in creating world-class institutions and for her actions to establish women as key players in the African economy. Among other roles, Nsanzabaganwa has acted as minister of trade and industry in Rwanda and deputy governor of the Rwandese National Bank.<br></p><p>Watch the video of Dr Nsanzabaganwa receiving her degree here:</p><div class="ms-rtestate-read ms-rte-embedcode ms-rte-embedil ms-rtestate-notify"><iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/eOY_R5yldSo" frameborder="0"></iframe> </div><p><br></p><p>"Contrary to an alarming trend of our age, Monique does not believe in alternative facts, or in sidestepping responsibility," said prof Stan du Plessis, who proposed the toast to Nsanzabaganwa. "When you speak to her about her decisions as a minister and as a deputy governor, she continuously emphasises accountability and clear leadership, which allows for the emergence of responsible citizenship."</p><p>"Rwanda, which once qualified as a failed state, has managed to rise out of the genocide ashes and prospered," said Nsanzabaganwa."At an occasion like this, I feel very humbled. I dedicate this honorary doctorate of commerce to those who aspire and work hard to make Africa and Africans reach their full economic potential."</p>
Earth Sciences students on board the ocean's red Ferrarihttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=1137Earth Sciences students on board the ocean's red FerrariWiida Fourie-Basson<p>​​​Two Stellenbosch University postgraduate students in the Department of Earth Sciences – Natasha van Horsten and Raimund Rentel – left this week on the SA Agulhas II for a three-month return voyage to Antarctica. The SA Agulhas II is South Africa's state-of-the-art polar research vessel, and is managed by the Department of Environmental Affairs.</p><p>They will be working with the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research's (CSIR) Dr Thato Mtshali to sample iron from the Southern Ocean in order to study its role in the photosynthesis of phytoplankton. This will shed light on how the Southern Ocean is taking up carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.</p><p>According to Prof Alakendra Roychoudhury, their study leader and head of the Department of Earth Sciences, this is one of the single most important opportunities for South African scientists to study the geochemistry of an ocean as vast as the Southern Ocean.</p><p>"Because the Southern hemisphere is dominated by the Southern Ocean, it plays a crucial role in how large-scale climate systems are going to respond to changes in the geochemistry of the ocean. The SA Agulhas II is our only opportunity to sample along one trajectory of the Southern Ocean," he explains.</p><p>This will be Natasha's first trip to Antarctica and she is excited about being one of the privileged few to visit Antarctica: "The set-up for this trip is extensive and can be stressful. But it is definitely a great experience."</p><p>Natasha's research for her Master's degree is on the photosynthetic response of phytoplankton under different conditions, with light and iron as the main variables.</p><p>For Raimund, this trip is especially important as he will be collecting data in order to complete his MSc thesis. But there is much more to the process than just taking water samples from the ocean. He carries the solemn responsibility for ensuring the cleanliness of the GO-FLO bottles used for sampling iron. He furthermore faces a challenge for the on-board analyses of iron to infinitesimal levels.</p><p>"On the trip down there we will have time off, but as soon as the ship reaches the sampling location, we will do sampling more or less once every day for about 10 days straight. We will be using a Rosette, which has GO-FLO bottles mounted on it, plus a CTD (measuring conductivity, temperature and density). This rosette will be lowered to the seafloor or a depth of 4000 metres, whichever comes first," he explains.</p><p>Once the bottles are back on board, they are covered immediately and then transported to a clean container lab. From there the researchers can take samples for analysis on board or for use later on shore.</p><p>According to Raimund the best thing about the trip is sitting on the monkey deck, enjoying the sunset: "Spotting the first iceberg is also a great experience, even if you have seen it before."</p><p>If all goes well, the ship will be back in the Cape Town harbour on 13 February 2014.</p><p><em>On the photo, from the left, Dr Thato Mtshali, Natasha van Horsten, Prof Alakendra Roychoudhury and Raimund Rentel. </em></p><p><em>Issued by Wiida Fourie-Basson, media: Faculty of Science, Stellenbosch University, 021 808-2684, science@sun.ac.za</em></p><p><em><br></em></p>
Gap year co-operation between WC province and FVZS Institute http://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=1792Gap year co-operation between WC province and FVZS Institute Stephanie Nieuwoudt<p>​​The Frederik Van Zyl Slabbert Institute for Student Development Leadership (FVZS Institute) at Stellenbosch University will in 2015 cooperate with the Western Cape government on a leadership programme for young people wanting to take a gap year.  </p><p>The Year Beyond programme is an initiative of the Western Cape premier Helen Zille. At the launch earlier this week, she said this programme will make a contribution in keeping vulnerable children busy after school and help to give a direction to their lives.</p><p>According to Dr Leslie van Rooi, head of the FVZS Institute, this institute will develop a leadership course which will enable participants of the Year Beyond programme to "give back something to the community by becoming involved in schools". </p><p>"Participants will be equipped with specific skills enabling them to tutor at schools. The participants will be recent graduates who, for whatever reason, are not yet ready to enter the workplace as well as young people who have just matriculated."</p><p>The course will draw from elements of existing short courses offered by the FVZS Institute. Participants will also be exposed to thought leaders from different spheres of society.  </p><p>The  course will be developed and assessed by the FVZS Institute. </p><p>According to the website of the Western Cape Government, the <a href="http://www.westerncape.gov.za/yearbeyond">Year Beyond</a> initiative is an educational enrichment programme which broadens the horisons of learners in underperforming schools through academic support in mathematics, technology and languages. </p><p>The programme will be rolled out to 24 high- and primary schools in the Western Cape.  </p>
Volunteers in Year Beyond Programme reflect deeplyhttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=2631Volunteers in Year Beyond Programme reflect deeplyStephanie Nieuwoudt<p></p><p>Sometimes it is a roller coaster ride, but ultimately it is a process by which they learn a lot. Not only about others, but also about themselves and how they function as leaders.</p><p>This is the opinion of some of the volunteers participating in this year's Year Beyond programme. This programme is an initiative of Ms Helen Zille, Western Cape premier, and offers matriculants, students and other young people who would like to take a gap year, an opportunity to engage with schools in various ways.</p><p>In the process young people in vulnerable communities are positively impacted by the volunteers. By engaging with the learners and by being positive role models, volunteers can have an overall positive impact on learners.</p><p>Stellenbosch University's Frederik Van Zyl Slabbert Institute for Student Leadership Development (FVZS) is also involved in the initiative. Once a week volunteers attend a three-hour session as part of a FVZS course aimed at helping them to hone their leadership skills. The course runs from February until November</p><p>"The volunteers had to keep a diary in which they reflect on the first two months of the course. It gave me a deep insight into how their way of thinking has changed in just a few months.  These diary entries have also made me realize how much many of them have benefited from this programme," says Jethro Georgiades, coordinator: internal programmes at the FVZS Institute.</p><p>In his journal volunteer Raa Iq Jacobs writes that he had to overcome a few hurdles during the first month of training. </p><p>"The biggest challenge was working with others in a group.  I prefer to search for solutions and achieve success on my own. Initially I thought working with others would affect my independence."</p><p>He also did not make friends with the other volunteers or speak to them, because he did not think there was a place for them in his life.</p><p>"After a month I realized that other people play an important role in the success of this programme.  Although I had preconceived ideas of the others, I now realize how special they are and I  now communicate with everyone because I want to hear their life stories."</p><p>Raa-Iq writes that it was a shock to be at a school that is struggling financially, where parents are not involved and where discipline and respect are neglected.</p><p>The learners swore in class and spoke loudly to each other. He introduced some rules including that no swearing was to be tolerated and that learners had to raise their hands when they wanted to say something and not shout out.  </p><p>By the third week, he had won the confidence of most of the learners and he heard stories that made his hair stand on end. One of the girls told him that she was living on the streets because her mother had thrown her out. She survived on food she received through the school's feeding scheme.  </p><p>Another learner was repeatedly raped by her father while yet another had tried to kill his father by stabbing him.</p><p>Raa-Iq realised he had much to be thankful for having grown up in relative comfortable circumstances.</p><p>"I realized how important it is to help others. It is a wonderful feeling to know that perhaps, thanks to my influence, some learners may actually decide to complete their schooling. I always say to the learners that they can either allow their environment to impact negatively on them, or they can positively impact on the environment." </p><p>Ntobeko Sithole writes that he learned valuable lessons through the FVZS course. He initially thought that good leaders need only a microphone, charisma and the ability to spout propaganda.</p><p>"Through the FVZS lectures my understanding of leadership expanded tremendously. I learned that leadership is all about going in a certain direction and taking those who are engaged as well as those who are not engaged on the journey with you. My weaknesses as a leader was also explored." </p><p>He realised that his tendency to judge people on their appearance was superficial and, perhaps even discriminatory. </p><p>The area in which he worked as a volunteer is also known as Gangster's Paradise.</p><p>"However, I no longer see it as a haven for gangs, but as a beacon of light. The people in this area are in my mind no longer merely victims of crime, but individuals with dreams and aspirations." </p><p>He also learned that things are not just black and white, but that there are "50 shades of gray" (no pun intended ).</p><p>Rejeani Tiffani Jacobs wrote that she is proud of the learners who are willing to attend additional programmes after school. </p><p>"There will always be problems out there. But when we manage to overcome these problems, we all benefit and we all become stronger."</p><ul><li><span style="line-height:1.6;"><span style="color:#3a3a3a;font-family:'noto sans', sans-serif;font-size:14px;line-height:21px;background-color:#ffffff;">Photo of hands from FreeDigitalPhotos.net (Photographer: Africa).</span></span></li><li><span style="line-height:20.7999992370605px;">Photo of Premier Helen Zille speaking to students about the Year Beyond Programme was taken by Stefan Els.​</span></li></ul><p> </p>
First multimedia dictionary for South African Sign Languagehttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=3632First multimedia dictionary for South African Sign LanguageWiida Fourie-Basson<p>A lexicographer and a computer science student from Stellenbosch University (SU) combined forces to develop the first prototype of a multimedia electronic dictionary for South African Sign Language.</p><p>Dr Hanelle Fourie Blair, assistant-editor of the Dictionary of the Afrikaans Language (WAT), developed a theoretical model of an electronic sign language dictionary for foundation phase learners for her doctoral thesis in lexicography in 2013.</p><p>Two years later, Hanno Schreiber developed the software for a multimedia electronic dictionary, based on her theoretical model, for his final year honours project in Computer Science at SU.</p><p><strong>Why do we need a multimedia sign language dictionary?</strong></p><p>Dr Fourie Blair says few people realise that sign language, just like any other spoken language, has its own distinctive linguistics (science of language) and grammar.</p><p>"I want to establish a culture where Deaf people and especially children have ease of access to user-friendly dictionaries, thereby developing a deeper reading culture. It is truly disheartening that most Deaf people do not read and therefore remain mostly illiterate. It does not have to be that way."</p><p>Up to now most text books for sign language in South Africa were written in such a way to assist hearing people to communicate with the Deaf, and not the other way round. There is also a glaring lack of language text books and dictionaries for Deaf children, compared to what are available for hearing children.</p><p>Dr Fourie Blair says Deaf children should also spend more time acquiring language skills than on speech therapy: "Why spend hours teaching a Deaf child to form and speak certain sounds, while they could have used that time to acquire the necessary language skills to discover the world of science and literature?</p><p>"The most natural and accessible language for a Deaf child is sign language. First establish their language skills. Then you can teach them all the other things," she says.</p><p><strong>How does a multimedia sign language dictionary works?</strong></p><p>The multimedia electronic dictionary functions without the principle of a specific source language or target language. In other words, users can search the dictionary by means of a picture, a sign or a word – each search method will lead to exactly the same result. The picture search method also implies that the user does not have to be literate in sign or written language to be able to use the dictionary.</p><p>Hanno says he was surprised at how well two completely different disciplines could work together: "Hanelle was the ideal study leader for such a software project. She explained concepts in her thesis that were unclear to me. We sat down and drew pictures until we were both on the same page. I kept her informed of my progress, and she gave feedback about what she liked and what she wanted to change. Her insight, patience and passion with this project made it a pleasure to work with her."</p><p>Dr Fourie Blair says it was wonderful to work with someone who could give life to her ideas: "Thanks to Hanno's project I can now demonstrate my idea to people. But there is still a lot of work ahead."</p><p>Institutions such as the <a href="https://www.facebook.com/DeafSA-271471837806/">Deaf Federation of South Africa</a> has already expressed their interest in the project: "They are actually disappointed that the dictionary is not yet complete!" she laughs.</p><p>The next step is to gather the necessary content to transform the prototype into a usable multimedia dictionary. This includes decisions regarding content and material, followed by the writing of definitions and sample sentences, with accompanying pictures and videos of the signs, as well as videos of definitions and sample sentences in sign language.</p><p>Hanno will receive his Honours degree in Computer Science at SU's March 2016 graduation ceremony. He is currently working at the CSIR in Pretoria and plans to continue with an MSc in 2017.</p><p>"To me, the project was an opportunity to develop a system that will fill a gap and help the Deaf community. At the same time it was wonderful to be able to develop a comprehensive prototype of Hanelle's wonderful theoretical model," he adds.</p><p><strong>For editors</strong></p><p>Deaf versus deaf: In the literature a distinction is made between Deaf and deaf. People who are deaf have an audiological hearing problem but they do not use sign language (this is often people who became deaf later in life). People who are Deaf belong to a cultural and linguistic minority that uses sign language as their first language.</p><p><img src="/english/PublishingImages/Lists/dualnews/My%20Items%20View/screenshot.JPG" alt="screenshot.JPG" style="margin:5px;" /> </p><p><em>Above: After a search for the concept, word or sign "apple", the user will see a picture of an apple, the written word "apple" and a video of APPLE in sign language on the results page. A finger spelling of the word connects the written form and the visual form with the concept in sign language. Then follows a parallel structure where a definition and a sample sentence is given in written as well as sign language. This means that the dictionary is fully bilingual and bidirectional.</em></p><p><strong>Contact details</strong></p><p>Dr Hanelle Fourie Blair</p><p>E: <a href="mailto:hfourie@sun.ac.za">hfourie@sun.ac.za</a></p><p>S: 082 725 3631</p><p> </p><p>Hanno Schreiber</p><p>E: <a href="mailto:hanno.schreiber@gmail.com">hanno.schreiber@gmail.com</a></p><p style="text-align:center;"><em><br></em></p><p style="text-align:center;"><em>Media release issued by Wiida Fourie-Basson, Media: Faculty of Science, science@sun.ac.za, 021 808 2684</em></p><p><br></p>
Nelson Mandela Week around the cornerhttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=4966Nelson Mandela Week around the cornerCorporate Communication/Korporatiewe Kommunikasie<p>​Yes, it is that time of the year again where the opportunity for social responsibility is given to staff and students who would like to get involved with volunteer work.  <br></p><p style="text-align:justify;">The focus at institutional level is to create these opportunities in lieu of Mandela day with the vision of sustainability in effort for volunteer work, as well as ongoing involvement with volunteer work on a personal level.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">The following information outlines the opportunities for volunteer work during the month of July 2017. If you wish to volunteer your time (67 minutes), please contact the relevant persons.<br></p><table cellspacing="0" width="100%" class="ms-rteTable-default"><tbody><tr><td class="ms-rteTable-default" style="width:20%;"><strong>NR</strong></td><td class="ms-rteTable-default" style="width:20%;"><strong>ACTIVITY</strong></td><td class="ms-rteTable-default" style="width:20%;"><strong>DATE & TIME</strong></td><td class="ms-rteTable-default" style="width:20%;"><strong>ORGANISATION/BENIFICIARY </strong></td><td class="ms-rteTable-default" style="width:20%;"><strong>VENUE</strong></td></tr><tr><td class="ms-rteTable-default">1</td><td class="ms-rteTable-default"><p style="text-align:justify;">"Toasties for Tummies<em>"</em></p><p style="text-align:justify;">Preparation of sandwiches</p></td><td class="ms-rteTable-default"><p style="text-align:justify;"><span style="text-decoration:underline;">18 July 2017</span></p><p style="text-align:justify;"><strong>Stellenbosch </strong><strong>campus timeslots:</strong></p><p style="text-align:justify;"><strong> </strong></p><ul><li>10:00-11:00</li><li>11:00-12:00</li><li>12:00-13:00</li><li>13:00-14:00</li></ul></td><td class="ms-rteTable-default"><p style="text-align:justify;">Athlone YMCA;CFS</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Kylemore Charity Foundation;</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Community Development</p><p style="text-align:justify;">(Western Cape Government);</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Dean of Tygerberg Campus</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Khayelitsha Project;Disaster Unit;Feeding in Action; Golden Key; Hands of Honour; Kayamandi Project; Kensington SAPS; Levenda, Aurora and Phyllaria; Longlands Community; Matie Sport and Simonsberg Residence; New Life Community Project; Night Shelter; Standing Rock Drug Rehab Centre</p><p style="text-align:justify;">The Ark</p></td><td class="ms-rteTable-default"><p style="text-align:justify;"><strong>Stellenbosch campus: </strong></p><p style="text-align:justify;"><strong> </strong></p><p style="text-align:justify;">Wooden Deck of Neelsie (2<sup>nd</sup> floor)</p><p style="text-align:justify;"><strong> </strong></p><p style="text-align:justify;">Contact Michelle Pietersen at</p><p style="text-align:justify;"><a href="mailto:mpieters@sun.ac.za">mpieters@sun.ac.za</a></p><p style="text-align:justify;">or 021 8083643</p><p style="text-align:justify;"> </p><p style="text-align:justify;"> </p></td></tr><tr><td class="ms-rteTable-default">2</td><td class="ms-rteTable-default">Comfort packs and Food items</td><td class="ms-rteTable-default">17-28 July 2017</td><td class="ms-rteTable-default">Students</td><td class="ms-rteTable-default">Various<br></td></tr></tbody></table><p><br></p><div><strong>CONTACT PERSONS:</strong></div><div><strong><br></strong></div><div><strong>Toasties for Tummies: </strong><br></div><div><br></div><div>Michelle Petersen: mpieters@sun.ac.za; 0218083643</div><div><br></div><div><strong>Comfort packs and Food items:</strong></div><div>Ghafsa Gamiet : ghgamiet@sun.ac.za; 021 808 4833</div><div>Cheryl Cornelissen: cherylc@sun.ac.za; 21 808 4182</div><div>Lize Kruger: lizek@sun.ac.za; 021 808 4182</div><div>Lizzie Witbooi: lgwitbooi@sun.ac.za; 021 808 4511<br></div><div>Grizelda Adams: grizeldaa@sun.ac.za;  021 808 4010</div><div>Carla Johnson: mad@sun.ac.za; 083 843 0878</div><div>Adri Brits: a3b@sun.ac.za; 021 938 9591</div><div><br></div><div><strong>Comfort Packs and Food Items</strong><br><br></div><p style="text-align:justify;">We aim to collect non-perishable food items and toiletries for students who are in dire need.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">As part of Mandela Day celebrations, we would like encourage all fellow students, residences, PSO and student societies as well as staff to donate toiletries (comfort packs) and non-perishable food items to students who are in dire need.  </p><p style="text-align:justify;"><strong>The following items are needed:</strong></p><p style="text-align:justify;"><strong>Non-perishable food items </strong></p><div><ul style="list-style-type:disc;"><li>baked beans                    </li><li> tinned mixed vegetables,<br></li><li>peas                                 </li><li>tinned fish<br></li><li>sweetcorn                         </li><li>rice </li><li>oats                                  </li><li>two minute noodles</li><li>tea                                   <br></li><li>packet soups</li><li>sugar </li><li>pasta and any other nutritional non-perishable food<br></li></ul></div><p style="text-align:justify;"><strong>Comfort packs</strong></p><p style="text-align:justify;">Toiletry packs should please contain the following basic items: </p><ul style="list-style-type:disc;"><li>soap                                 </li><li>vaseline</li><li>toothpaste                        </li><li>body lotion </li><li>roll-on                    </li><li>small pack of washing powder<br></li></ul><p style="text-align:justify;"><strong>Use your 67 minutes to deliver these items from the 17</strong><strong><sup>th</sup></strong><strong> until 28</strong><strong><sup>th</sup></strong><strong> of July 2017 to the following drop-off points:</strong></p><ul><li>The Registrar's Division; </li><li>Centre for Student Counselling and Development (SSVO) at 37 Victoria Street or the Office of the Social Worker at 49 Victoria Street </li><li>Transformation Office at Admin A Building (Use the IT Hub Entrance);</li><li>Office of Interpreting service (Language Centre), Room 1028,  at Admin A Building;  (Use the IT Hub Entrance) </li><li>MAD<sup>2</sup> Office in the Neelsie;</li><li>Tygerberg Campus - TSS – (Adri Brits's Office)</li><li>We would like to challenge each department/faculty to create their own drop–off points within their departments or faculties;</li><li>Residences and PSO should have create their own drop-off points within their residences or clusters<br></li></ul><div><strong>For enquiries, please contact the following staff members</strong>: <br></div><div><div><ul><li>Ghafsha Gamiet:       <a href="mailto:ghgamiet@sun.ac.za">ghgamiet@sun.ac.za</a>;  021 808 4833<br></li><li>Cheryl Cornelissen:  <a href="mailto:cherylc@sun.ac.za">cherylc@sun.ac.za</a>;      021 808 4182</li><li>Lize Kruger:              <a href="mailto:lizek@sun.ac.za">lizek@sun.ac.za</a> ;         021 808 4182</li><li>Lizzie Witbooi:          <a href="mailto:lgwitbooi@sun.ac.za">lgwitbooi@sun.ac.za</a>;    021 808 4511</li><li>Grizelda Adams:       <a href="mailto:grizeldaa@sun.ac.za">grizeldaa@sun.ac.za</a>;   021 808 4010<br></li><li>Carla Johnson:         <a href="mailto:mad@sun.ac.za">mad@sun.ac.za</a>;           083 843 0878</li><li>   Adri Brits:                  <a href="mailto:a3b@sun.ac.za">a3b@sun.ac.za</a>;            021 938 9591<br></li></ul></div><div><br><br></div><br></div>
Stellenbosch University Choir wins big at international Choir Gameshttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=4071Stellenbosch University Choir wins big at international Choir GamesCorporate Marketing/Korporatiewe Bemarking<p>The University Choir of Stellenbosch under the baton of André van der Merwe, was the biggest winner at the eighth International Choir Games held in Russia. The Games came to an end today.</p><p>The Choir won first places and gold medals in three categories. In the category for sacred á Capella, it received a score of 92%; in the category for Spirituals 94%; and, in the category for contemporary music 98%. This is the highest score awarded in any of the 27 categories in which choirs competed in over the last ten days. With this achievement, the SU Choir keeps its first place on the Interkultur list as best international non-professional choir – a position the Choir has been holding since 2012. </p><p>A further bonus was the special CD contract for the coveted <em>Choirs of the World </em>series. </p><p><span style="line-height:20.8px;">"The win is a bonus," said Van der Merwe. "My point of view is always that winning is not the only goal. To me it is much more enjoyable to challenge myself and the team to explore the music with integrity. When the music comes first, it communicates in a powerful way. In the end it is all about challenging oneself to experience how your culture takes shape in the international context.</span><span style="line-height:1.6;">"</span><br></p><p>The International Choir Games are held biannually and this year more than 300 choirs from 36 countries competed. This is the biggest choir competition in the world. Interkultur earlier announced that the ninth International Choir Games in 2018 will be in Tshwane, South Africa.</p><p>The SU Choir consists of 120 students and André van der Merwe has been leading the choir for 12 years. <span style="line-height:1.6;">"The choir members were true ambassadors for Matieland and South Africa," Van der Merwe continued. "Choir music does not only bring our own cultures together, but also demonstrates to international audiences that music brings people closer to one another. I am immensely proud of the choir - success is never a one man show.  Hidden behind the glory of achievement is a system of outstanding management, team work and commitment."</span></p><p>The Choir is expected to arrive at Cape Town International Airport in two groups – on Tuesday 19 July and Friday 22 July.</p><p>- More information to follow</p><p>- Photo: World Choir Games Facebook site<br></p>
Half-a-million rand for academic work in Afrikaanshttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=2607Half-a-million rand for academic work in AfrikaansStephanie Nieuwoudt<p>​​​​Prize money of R500 000 will from next year be awarded by Het Jan Marais Nationale Fonds (HJMNF) in collaboration with Naspers and Stellenbosch University to an academic or researcher working in Afrikaans and whose work contributes to strengthening it as an academic language and medium of scientific research.</p><p>The establishment of the Jan H Marais prize, the largest of its kind for Afrikaans, was announced on Saturday (30 May 2015) by Prof Andreas van Wyk, chairperson of HJMNF, at a dinner marking the creation of the Fund 100 years ago. The University also announced last week it <span style="color:#333333;font-family:arial, helvetica, sans-serif;font-size:12px;line-height:20px;background-color:#ffffff;">is to create a <a href="/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=2605">fund</a> for the development of Xhosa as an academic language.</span></p><p>The dinner took place at the Jannie Marais House at Coetzenburg. At this event "the benefactor of Stellenbosch",  Johannes (Jannie) Henoch Marais (1851-1915), who died 100 years ago, was also honoured. Earlier in the day, a wreath-laying ceremony took place at his grave on Papegaaiberg. </p><p>"With this prize we will acknowledge scientific work and publications of a high standard in Afrikaans," Van Wyk said. "The prize will be awarded jointly by HJMNF, Naspers and Stellenbosch University (SU), which will each contribute to the prize money."</p><p>Van Wyk explained that the idea for the prize came from a remark made by Prof Wim de Villiers, Rector and Vice-Chancellor of Stellenbosch University (SU).</p><p>"After his appointment last year as new Rector, he asked in an interview where the support is from outside of SU for the development of Afrikaans as academic language. He pointed out that financial support cannot just come from his University. This prize is the answer to his challenge."</p><p>Exceptional work in all disciplines – arts and social sciences, natural sciences, health sciences and technology – done within South Africa as well as abroad, can be nominated. </p><p>Selection will be done by a committee consisting of renowned local and international scientists and academics convened by the Suid-Afrikaanse Akademie vir Wetenskap en Kuns (South African Academy for Science and Arts). All award ceremonies will take place in Stellenbosch, and the first one is scheduled for 26 May 2016. Recipients will be able to use the prize money as they see fit.</p><p>The HJMNF was created in 1915 through a bequest by Jan Marais. Thanks to careful and thorough management over the last century, today this fund has grown to more than R1 billion. </p><p>It was also thanks to a bequest of £100 000 (about R100 million today) by Oom Jannie – as Maties students like to call him – that SU was born out of the then Victoria College in 1918. Shortly before his death, Marais also gave £30 000 for the founding of the then Nationale Pers Beperkt (Naspers today) and the daily newspaper De Burger (Die Burger today). </p><p>Annually, HJMNF donates more than R20 million to schools, university programmes, hospitals, cultural projects, legal aid and a variety of other organisations and projects, mainly in and around Stellenbosch. However, through its support of a number of other initiatives, including the Klein Karoo Nasionale Kunstefees and performing artists, the impact of HJMNF extends nationwide. </p><p>The book, <em>Nalatenskappe sonder einde: Die verhaal van Jannie Marais en die Marais-broers</em>, by the historian and Emeritus Professor Pieter Kapp, was launched at the dinner.  And excerpts from Herman Binge's documentary film, <em>Die goeie gewer</em>, was shown at the event. It will be broadcast on kykNET on 31 May at 14:30. </p><p>Exhibitions tracing the life of Jannie Marais and his brothers can be seen in SU's library and the Jannie Marais house (the home of Maties Sport today) until the end of June.</p><p><span lang="EN-GB" style="text-decoration:underline;"><strong>Issued by:</strong></span>           Het Jan Marais Nationale Fonds</p><p><span lang="EN-GB" style="text-decoration:underline;"><strong>Contact:</strong></span>               Prof Andreas van Wyk, Chairperson, Cell 082 809 3113; E-mail ahvw@sun.ac.za</p><p><span lang="EN-GB" style="text-decoration:underline;"><strong>Media Inquiries:</strong></span>  Stephanie Nieuwoudt, Cell 083 297 8785; E-mail snieuw@gmail.com</p><p>Photo: <span style="line-height:20.7999992370605px;">At the dinner where Prof Andreas van Wyk, chairperson of the Het Jan Marais Nationale Fonds, his wife, Magdaleen, mnr Ton Vosloo, outgoing chairperson of Naspers and his wife, Anet Pienaar-Vosloo (right). </span><span style="line-height:20.7999992370605px;">​</span>​Photographer: Anton Jordaan<br></p><p> </p>
Stellenbosch University is partner to SA's premier Innovation Summithttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=1770Stellenbosch University is partner to SA's premier Innovation SummitNicolette Louw<p>Stellenbosch University (SU) is a proud partner of the 7<sup>th</sup> Annual <a href="http://www.innovationsummit.co.za/">SA Innovation Summit</a>. The Summit will be taking place in Cape Town for the first time this year at the Cape Town Stadium from 16 to 18 September. </p><p>The two days will be filled with a line-up of innovation exhibits, showcases, interesting speakers, pitches of ground-breaking inventions and networking opportunities. Innovation at SU will be showcased by InnovUS, The LaunchLab and the Collaboratory network (SPL, USB, USB-ED and IFR). </p><p>Frik Landman (CEO of USB-ED) will represent the SU on the CEO panel on 17 September at 12:00, alongside the CEOs of Du Pont and General Electric.</p><p>Stellenbosch University students can attend the Summit at a <strong>reduced fee </strong>of R2000 (discount of R2750!) and staff can register in groups of 5 or more at a 15% group discount. Students that do not want to attend for the full two days, but would like to visit the exhibitions and showcases can register for the SparkLab at R50. Registrations can be done online at <a href="http://www.innovationsummit.co.za/event-registration/">http://www.innovationsummit.co.za/event-registration/</a>.  </p><p>Do not miss out on this opportunity to learn, share, be inspired and become a part of the SA Innovation network.</p>
Public Protector becomes an honorary Matiehttp://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=2382Public Protector becomes an honorary MatieKorporatiewe Bemarking/Corporate Marketing <p><span lang="EN-ZA">​The Public Protector, Adv Thuli Madonsela, became an “honorary Matie” today (Thursday 26 March). Stellenbosch University (SU) conferred honorary doctorates upon Madonsela, the internationally renowned physicist, Prof Neil Turok and the visionary business leader, Mr Michiel le Roux. </span></p><p><span lang="EN-ZA">More than 2700 Maties received their degrees at seven different graduation ceremonies in Stellenbosch this week.</span></p><p><span lang="EN-ZA">The degree Doctor of Laws (LLD), honoris causa, was awarded to Adv Thuli Madonsela for her unwavering commitment to the Constitution, her contribution to eradicate discrimination through law reform, and her role as fearless advocate for justice.</span></p><p><span lang="EN-ZA">Michiel le Roux received the degree Doctor of Commerce (DComm), honoris causa, for his revolutionary renewal of the South African banking industry by developing a unique banking system that addresses the needs of the lower income part of the population. </span></p><p><span lang="EN-ZA">The degree Doctor of Science (DSc), honoris causa, was awarded to Neil Turok for his excellent contribution as physicist and cosmologist, and his continued efforts as education activist to unlock the world of science for fellow Africans. </span></p> <p><span lang="EN-ZA">In proposing a toast for Madonsela at a special function held for recipients of doctorates, Prof Juanita Pienaar of the Faculty of Law, said that she was struck by Madonsela’s humbleness and that she is an inspiration to us all. “We cannot do without Thuli Madonsela, we cannot do without a public protector that is true and steadfast.” </span></p><p><span lang="EN-ZA">In her acceptance speech, Madonsela said that she was humbled and honoured by the award. “Words cannot the describe the deep sense of gratitude that I feel today.” She added that she cannot accept the award only on her own behalf but also on behalf of her whole office. </span></p><p><span lang="EN-ZA">She gave credit to her co-recipients and said that what makes the world go round  is being different. “ The reason for the developments in science is that we have people, like Prof Neil Turok, who thought differently. The reason we have people today who have access to credit in a very open way, is because among us, is because we have people like Michiel le Roux who decided to start Capitec.”  It has taken people pushing boundaries to prove to the world that there is more to life than what we see in any given time, she added. </span></p><p><span lang="EN-ZA">Embrace your God-given talents, because that is your gift to the world, she told recipients of doctorates and graduates. </span></p><p><span lang="EN-ZA">Videos on the honorary doctorates are available here:  <br></span></p><ul><li><a href="http://youtu.be/0UWsJExTRsE"><strong class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-5-0">Michiel le Roux</strong></a><br class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-5-0"><span lang="EN-ZA" class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-5-0"><a href="http://youtu.be/h4ts2BjMWfk"></a></span></li><li><span lang="EN-ZA" class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-5-0"><a href="http://youtu.be/h4ts2BjMWfk"><strong class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-5-0">Thuli Madonsela</strong></a><strong>.</strong></span></li><li><span lang="EN-ZA"><a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HV0c_Qh_Qp0&feature=youtu.be"><strong class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-5-0">Niel Turok</strong></a><br></span></li></ul><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin:6pt 0mm;line-height:normal;"><span lang="EN-ZA"><em>Complete article to follow.</em></span></p><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin:6pt 0mm;line-height:normal;">Caption: Prof Leopoldt van Huyssteen, Acting Rector and Vice-Chancellor; Adv Thuli Madonsela, Prof Neil Turok and Mr Michiel le Roux. (Photo: Anton Jordaan).<br><span lang="EN-ZA"></span></p>