Student Affairs
Welkom by Universiteit Stellenbosch

 

 

Corona Virus: Updates and Managementhttps://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=7117Corona Virus: Updates and ManagementDr. Lynne Julie<p>The Corona virus has been all over the media in recent weeks and for good reason. The virus is relatively new and therefore, guidelines change daily as we learn more and more about it. To date (12/02), this is what we know; however, next week, this information will be outdated, and we will probably know more. <br></p><p>The Department of Health, South Africa, continues to monitor the rapidly evolving developments surrounding the Coronavirus outbreak closely. The World Health Organisation provides them with daily situational updates and continues to inform them should there be revisions in guidelines. Campus Health Service follows the guidelines set out by the Department of Health and NICD (National Institute of Communicable Diseases).</p><p>We can confirm that, to date, there is no case of Coronavirus in South Africa.</p><p>Coronaviruses are a large family of respiratory viruses that can cause diseases ranging from the common cold to the Middle-East Respiratory Syndrome and the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS). Evidence continues to show that the vast majority of patients affected by Coronavirus experience mild to moderate symptoms that are mostly upper respiratory in nature- that is cough, sneezing and runny nose. Generalized symptoms are mostly fever and flu like symptoms.</p><p>The Virus is predominantly spread by infected droplets in the air. The virus has also been cultured from stool suggesting the possibility of faeco- oral spread. We therefore continue to reinforce our public messages of preventative behaviour: avoid contact with someone that exhibits flu like symptoms; regular hand washing; do not sneeze or cough into your hand- rather use another barrier; hygienic food preparation and not consuming undercooked or raw meat.</p><p>Our recommendations for students and staff of Stellenbosch University that are travelling to, and returning from China, is to take necessary precautions and report to health care officials should they develop any symptoms.</p><p> </p><p>As a way to reduce your risk of coronavirus infection:</p><ul><li>Clean your hands with soap and water or alcohol-based hand rub</li><li>Cover your nose and mouth when coughing and sneezing with a tissue or a flexed elbow</li><li>Avoid close contact with anyone with cold or flu-like symptoms</li><li>Thoroughly cook meat and eggs</li><li>Avoid unprotected contact with live wild or farm animals</li></ul><p> </p><p>If you want to discuss this further, or are worried about any symptoms, please make an appointment at Campus Health Service by calling 021 808 3494/6.<br></p><p><br></p>
New Maties SRC Chair commits to giving students his best​https://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=7108New Maties SRC Chair commits to giving students his best​Corporate Communication<p>​The newly elected Stellenbosch University (SU) Student Representative Council (SRC) Chairperson for the 2020 academic year, Mr Lewis Mboko, says he is excited and ready to give students his best by creating the best possible Stellenbosch environment for all.<br></p><p>The 22-year-old Economics and Investment Management student from Harare in Zimbabwe says he envisions an inclusive Stellenbosch University for his term as Chairperson – a place where students' race, religion, sexuality, financial status or country of birth do not act as barriers to prevent them from reaching their full potential. </p><p>Mboko is to the best of the University's knowledge the first Zimbabwean student to head the SRC. </p><p>Mboko has big plans for his term which ends in September. “I intend to deal with issues that have plagued us as an institution, issues such as historical debt and I want to create platforms where engagement on issues like gender based violence, responsible drinking, race relations, sexuality and other critical issues can take place," says Lewis.</p><p>“One of my plans is to try and to set up a gazebo on the Rooiplein or a table in the Neelsie at certain times so as to keep up with the issues that students are facing and so that we are able to work together towards solutions," he adds.</p><p>Mboko says he believes in unity. “My main priorities are to unite the campus, making sure that no student is excluded, and that all voices are heard, not just the loudest or the most powerful voices, but all voices."</p><p>He says he plans to improve the visibility of the SRC on the Stellenbosch campus and be more accessible to students.</p><p>“Stellenbosch University is very diverse and the needs are also diverse. It varies from the one extreme where someone's biggest problem is getting something to eat to the other extreme of having parking," says Mboko.</p><p>He says taking the responsibility to represent each Matie means that he has to take these differences into consideration and not downplay anyone's need. Mboko says he will represent students in a manner that ensures that everyone's needs are met.</p><p>Mboko admits that it is not possible to do this alone. “I do not expect to do this on my own but to take hands with each and every stakeholder at the University to ensure that Stellenbosch University becomes the best place for our students."</p><p>On a personal note, Mboko says his personal development focus is on Development Economics and becoming a chartered financial analyst after university. </p><p>“It is my dream to understand how the financial field works and to look at the current state of Africa, specifically the lagging compared to other continents, because a lot needs to be done and I want to be part of that change and see my continent improve," he adds.</p><p>He says having been born in one of the poorest countries in Africa, he dreams of one day being among the people who will help to rewrite the story of Africa.</p><p>In congratulating Mboko, Prof Wim de Villiers, Rector and Vice-Chancellor, said that he is looking forward to working with him: “Your election fits in with our focus on internationalisation. Students are a priority for us. And I am always proud to see Maties make an impact as global citizens."</p><p>Dr Choice Makhetha, Senior Director: Student Affairs, congratulated Mboko for “winning the hearts of fellow students, confirming the kind of student leadership the students appreciate and yearn for." </p><p>She added that she has experienced Mboko as a grounded person who is clear on what he stands for; very humble, with a powerful ability to listen before he takes a decision; and passionate about serving the students. </p><p>“He is a leader who is always ready to learn while remaining firm on what is beneficial for the broader student community. The Division of Student Affairs is ready to provide all the support the SRC needs as a team, and to motivate them as leaders, to lead ethically and with integrity." <br></p>
R150m University Technology Fund a First for Africahttps://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=7109R150m University Technology Fund a First for AfricaInnovus <p>​Stellenbosch University (SU) and the University of Cape Town will be co-investing with the newly established R150-million University Technology Fund (UTF) that was set up by the SA SME Fund in its endeavour to partner with South African universities to commercialise the technologies and business ideas that arise from these unversities.  Stocks & Strauss was appointed as the Fund Manager.<br></p><p>Says Anita Nel, Chief Director of Innovation and Business Development, who heads up Innovus, Stellenbosch University's industry interaction platform for the commercialisations of the institution's assets: “The UTF is a first for the African continent and we are incredibly proud to be part of what will be a significant game changer for universities wishing to bring their technologies to the market."</p><p>SU's Rector and Vice-Chancellor, Prof Wim de Villiers, said Innovus has been instrumental in building an impressive group of companies for the university and has also established the LaunchLab which supports entrepreneurs from both inside and outside the institution.</p><p>“This business incubator has helped establish SU as an internationally acclaimed entrepreneurial university. With entrepreneurship as one of our strategic focus areas, the UTF is of the utmost importance to us. Our financial investment alongside the UTF is our commitment to support and reward the innovative researchers who create intellectual property with strong commercial potential," said De Villiers. </p><p>For a few years now, Nel and her team have been working on developing a funding model for early seed capital for universities' inventions and to gain support for it.  Such funding is crucial for the initial development phase of early stage technologies and to set up start-up ventures. Funds focusing solely on investing in university technologies are mushrooming abroad, but the UTF is the first investment fund in Africa dedicated for university inventions.  It has a unique model that makes provision for a pre-seed funding allocation that empowers institutions' technology transfer offices to support early stage technology development, building a solid pipeline of investable technologies for the UTF.  </p><p>“We are very thankful to Mr Tom Hockaday, who headed up the technology transfer office of Oxford University, and Dr Tony Raven, the CEO of Cambridge Enterprise, for the many hours they have spent sharing their extensive university early stage fund experience with us and for the invaluable advice they have given us in this regard.  It was a privilege to work with such experienced individuals," said Nel.  “Based on best practice, the fund is crucial in our endeavour to create a knowledge region around the University where entrepreneurs will be financially and intellectually supported."​<br></p><p>Championing this initiative, CEO of the SA SME Fund, Ketso Gordhan, said that he is excited by the prospect of partnering with South African universities to commercialise technologies and business ideas arising across South African campuses. The next step is for the fund to be expanded to include more universities.</p><p><strong><em><br></em></strong></p><p><strong><em>About Innovus</em></strong></p><p><em>Innovus is a division of Stellenbosch University responsible for technology transfer, entrepreneurial support and development, and innovation at the university. Innovus manages the commercialisation of the University's innovation and intellectual property portfolio through patenting, licensing and the formation of spin-out companies.</em></p><p><em>Through our LaunchLab business incubator, Innovus offers various services to and opportunities for entrepreneurs. In addition to this their equity holding in the Innovus group of companies is a valuable asset for the university.</em></p><p><em>Innovus is also home to the University's Short Courses, Copyright and Trademark division, as well as SunCom, that manages a wide range of commercial services for the University.</em></p><p><em>Innovus's website (www.innovus.co.za) profiles an impressive portfolio of patents and provides tools and advice for inventors wishing to commercialise their ideas, and investors who want to help turn great ideas into reality.</em></p><p><strong><em>About the SA SME Fund</em></strong></p><p><em>The SA SME Fund was established by members of the CEO Initiative – a collaboration between government, labour and business to address some of the most pressing challenges to the country's economic growth – as an avenue of support for the SME sector.</em><em>  </em><em>The SA SME Fund allocate investment capital to accredited fund managers – venture capital or growth oriented equity funds – that invest directly in scalable small and medium enterprises with the best potential for growth and sustainable employment creation in the South African economy.</em><br></p><p><br><br></p>
New "Share a room" ResEd workshop breaks down boundarieshttps://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=7092New "Share a room" ResEd workshop breaks down boundariesCharl Linde<p>​​​<br></p>The Centre for Student Communities at Stellenbosch University (SU) in partnership with the university's Transformation Office has been running a number of ResEd workshops since the start of Welcoming Week. As part of the ResEd programme, every first-year student commencing ​studies at SU attends workshops structured around t​he themes of sociocultural awareness, leadership and intergroup skills. <br><br>The workshops help students navigate a new social environment, which is possibly very different from their high schools and home life. The ultimate objective is to expose students to new ways of thinking and seeing – specifically helping them see through the eyes of others, those different from themselves in every way – be that in terms of race, gender, sexuality or economic circumstances. The sessions addressing sociocultural awareness include the workshops entitled “Be aware of what's fair" and “Dictionary of difference". These sessions build awareness of social inequality and introduce students to the terminology of social inclusion. An entire new session called “Share a room" has been developed that showcases the opportunities and challenges associated with sharing intimate spaces at university, especially as house‑ or roommates. This session focuses on the joys and difficulties of being different and the importance of breaking down boundaries and engaging with one another from the very first day.  <br><br>New for 2020 is a focus on film screenings, which include a mix of popular cinema releases and documentaries such as <em>The People vs Patriarchy</em>, <em>Roll Red Roll</em> and <em>Hidden Figures</em>. The latter is a film about three black female mathematicians who played an important role in the US space programme but had to deal with discrimination based on their race and gender at work. Roll Red Roll focuses on sexual assault at a high school football party and the aftermath of that. The film highlights the culture of complicity and the role that peer pressure, denial, sports machismo and social media played in the tragedy. The People vs Patriarchy is a local production that engages people from different backgrounds on what they think patriarchy is and how it can be addressed. The documentary also looks into call‑out culture and the #menaretrash phenomenon. <br><br>Commenting on the ResEd workshops of 2020, Ms Babalwa Gusha from the Transformation Office says the introduction of the film screenings is an important initiative, which gives students a chance to absorb the information and engage in the internal “thinking work" that is often not possible in group workshops. Speaking of her experience at the sessions, she feels many South African learners are still products of their parents; she believes more work needs to be done at school level to help learners think critically about the country, its people, and their own place in our multicultural society. According to Mr Yeki Mosomothane (Multicultural Educator and Coordinator: Centre for Student Communities), around 4 000 new students from PSOs and residences participated in the ResEd sessions this year.<br><div><br></div><div><em>Photo courtesy of Corporate Communications</em><br></div>
SU’s LaunchLab announces: Stellenbosch University IdeaSmash 2020 Calling all Stellenbosch University students!https://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=7083SU’s LaunchLab announces: Stellenbosch University IdeaSmash 2020 Calling all Stellenbosch University students!Innovus<p>​​​​The Nedbank Stellenbosch University LaunchLab, in partnership with the Office of the Vice-Rector: Research, Innovation and Postgraduate Studies is looking for SU students with innovative business ideas across multiple study fields to impact our community and nation.<br></p><p>IdeaSmash serves as the Stellenbosch University internal round of the<a href="https://edhe.co.za/"> Entrepreneurship Development in Higher Education Intervarsity Programme 2020</a>. The winners of IdeaSmash will be put forward at a national level to represent the University in EDHE Intervarsity Competition for 2020.</p><p>The LaunchLab is recognised as the<a href="https://launchlab.co.za/ubi-global-announces-launchlab-as-top-challenger-in-africa-2019-2020/"> UBI Top Challenger in Africa for 2019 and 2020.</a> IdeaSmash is an opportunity for SU students to be part of LaunchLab's incubation programme which gives them the connections they need to start, build and grow their own businesses. Students will be able to validate their concepts or improve their technology offerings to the market. LaunchLab will assist students to validate their value propositions and discover who their customers are, using a lean startup approach.   </p><p>Cassidy de Wet, last year's winner of IdeaSmash and founder of<a href="https://www.tjaarge.co.za/"> Tjaarge Electric Skateboarding</a>, says: “I've sold twice as many electric skateboards in the past six months by being part of LaunchLab than being on my own for about a year. It's so important to be part of the LaunchLab community for any startup."</p><p>IdeaSmash winners will get the following benefits:</p><p>A share of R60 000</p><p>A certificate of recognition from the Office of the Vice-Rector for Research and Innovation.</p><p>Incubation support from LaunchLabEntry into the<a href="https://edhe.co.za/"> EDHE National Intervarsity Programme</a>​</p><p><br></p><p><strong>The categories for entry are:</strong></p><ol style="list-style-type:decimal;"><li>Business Ideas</li><li>Existing Business – Tech</li><li>Existing Business – Social Impact</li><li>Existing Business – General​<br><br></li></ol><p><strong>The judging criteria are:</strong></p><p>Is the business model clear and feasible?</p><p>Has the business been tested in the market yet?</p><p>Who is the target market, and how is the business positioned to reach its target market?</p><p>How is the business different from its competitors?</p><p>Is the business opportunity realistically achievable?</p><p><br></p><p>IdeaSmash is the perfect chance for SU students to turn their business ideas into reality. To enter, please complete the EDHE form on the LaunchLab website:<a href="https://launchlab.co.za/stellenbosch-university-ideasmash"> https://launchlab.co.za/stellenbosch-university-ideasmash</a></p><p><strong>The deadline for entries is Monday, 2 March 2020</strong></p><p><strong></strong><strong>About Nedbank Stellenbosch University LaunchLab</strong></p><p><strong></strong>LaunchLab is Stellenbosch University's startup incubator, founded for university spin-outs and also incubates startups from the startup ecosystem and partner universities in South Africa and Africa. The LaunchLab facilitates valuable connections for startups and corporates and is an initiative of Innovus, Stellenbosch University's industry interaction and innovation company. For more information, visit www.launchlab.co.za.</p><p>For more information, please contact:</p><p>Helen Fortuin</p><p>Telephone: +27 21 808 9494                                                      Email: helen@launchlab.co.za</p><p>Website: <a href="http://www.launchlab.co.za/">www.launchlab.co.za</a><br></p><p><br></p>
SciMathUS celebrates 20 years of student successhttps://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=7077SciMathUS celebrates 20 years of student successAsiphe Nombewu /Corporate Communication<p>​​The year 2020 marks the 20<sup>th</sup> anniversary of the Science and Mathematics at University of Stellenbosch (SciMathUS) university preparation programme.</p><p>The SciMathUS programme welcomed its 20<sup>th</sup> group of students, parents and guardians at the Endler Hall on the Stellenbosch University (SU) campus on Monday (3 February 2020). This year, only 100 students were selected out of 1 200 applications to be part of the programme.</p><p>The programme, presented by the Stellenbosch University Centre for Pedagogy (SUNCEP), offers students from educationally disadvantaged circumstances across the country a second chance to qualify for higher education by improving their National Senior Certificate result in specific subjects to enable them to reapply for university programmes. </p><p>Since its inception, SciMathUS has seen over 1 500 students receiving an opportunity to access the University through the programme.</p><p>To be considered for the programme, students must have passed their Grade 12 with a minimum average of 60% excluding Life Orientation, as well as obtain a minimum of 45% in Mathematics, a minimum of 45% in Physical Science or a minimum of 45% in Accounting.</p><p>Delivering his keynote address at the welcoming event, the Rector and Vice Chancellor at SU, Prof Wim de Villiers said, “You have made the right decision by applying for this programme. Now that we have granted you access, we expect you to succeed.</p><p>“You are at the right place to make your dreams come true. It is important to take control of your destiny. We have provided you with lecturers and mentors, you have to do the work," he said.</p><p>Motivating parents and guardians, Prof De Villiers noted, “My wife and I have put three children through university and from our experience, we have learnt that it is important to stay interested in your child's development.</p><p>“Keep up to date with the things your children are involved in," he added.</p><p>Talking to the students, Prof De Villiers said, “You are a very special group because you are the 20<sup>th</sup> SciMathUS intake in their 20<sup>th</sup> anniversary year in the year 2020."</p><p>Programme Manager at SciMathUS, Ms Nokwanda Siyengo said, “We are so proud of this programme and that is only because of the successes of our students. You have made it; do not take that for granted. </p><p>“We expect commitment from you. You will have to commit to how things are done here at SciMathUS, and it's possible that you might not like it, but it's for your own benefit."</p><p>She added that at SciMathUS they tried to alleviate the various challenges faced by students when living at home with their families.<br>“We offer our students accommodation, two meals a day and psychosocial support for those who need it," said Siyengo.<br></p><p>Former SciMathUS student and now a medical doctor at Groote Schuur hospital in Cape Town, Dr Lethabo Hlongwane, told the group of students that she had once been in their shoes too. “I was away from home and feeling like a failure after I had not been accepted into medical school in 2012.</p><p>“I took full advantage of the opportunities that came my way when I was here. Without this programme I would not be where I am today," she said.</p><p>The newly appointed Director of SUNCEP, Dr Benedict Khoboli, said SciMathUS worked tirelessly to ensure that students from educationally disadvantaged backgrounds reach their highest academic potential.<br><br></p>
New Maties making an impacthttps://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=7069New Maties making an impactCorporate Communication/Korporatiewe Kommunikasie [Asiphe Nombewu & Rozanne Engel]<p>​</p><p>More than 5 000 new Matie students took part in the annual Social Impact Community Morning at Stellenbosch University (SU) during the official Welcoming Week programme for newcomers.</p><p>On Thursday, 30 January 2020, students had the opportunity to meet various community partners involved in Social Impact initiatives in and around Stellenbosch and the Tygerberg area (for students of the Tygerberg campus), where they participated in an array of engaged activities, planned in collaboration with the community partners and student leaders.</p><p>On Stellenbosch campus, Academia residence collaborated with the Stellenbosch Municipality Disaster Unit in preparing over a hundred sandwich lunch packs, which will be distributed to designated areas in the Cloetesville area. </p><p>According to Jessica Garschagen, a student leader at Academia, this was not a “once off activity" for Welcoming Week. They plan to help the Disaster Unit and other community partners throughout the year by having “Sandwich Sundays" once or twice a month, where they will put together lunch packs that can be distributed to those in need in the greater Stellenbosch area.</p><p>The Community Morning also links well with the University's vision of, amongst others, advancing knowledge in service of society, the University's mission of enriching and transforming local communities and the strategic theme of building purposeful partnerships and inclusive networks – in this regard within the surrounding communities of the University.  </p><p>Students at Goldfields residence hosted Idas Valley Primary School for a day out playing fun games, face painting and handing out lunch packs. Social Impact HK at Goldfields, Ayrton Jackson, said their partnership with the school has been running for four years.</p><p>“This is one of the many ways in which Stellenbosch University opens its doors to the community. We want the first-year students to know that Stellenbosch is not only a university, it is a town and a community."</p><p>Deputy Director of Social Impact and Head of Maties Community Service at SU, Rene Hector Kannemeyer, said, “We want to make the University accessible to the people, especially kids within the Stellenbosch community." </p><p>As part of Helshoogte residence's Community Morning, they collaborated with Rietenbosch Primary School for a day at the sports ground. The residence's Social Impact HK, Christiaan Burger, said for them, community engagement did not end when the learners went back to the school.</p><p>“We will be doing a sandwich drive to the night shelter and we have book reading sessions included in our year plan for one of the schools in the community. We want the students to be aware of the difference they can make in society."</p><p>Majuba and Nerina residence had a chance to interact with 30 children from Hanna Charity and Empowerment Foundation. Social Impact HK at Majuba, Jacques Ceronio, said, “Our residence has a five-year working relationship with the foundation. We have plans of doing annual beach outings with the kids. We have secondary projects running like the making of sandwiches for the homeless. We don't just want to give them sandwiches, but we want students to sit down and have conversations."</p><p>Although some of the activities during the Community Morning were once-off visits, others are opportunities students can be involved in throughout the year.<br><br></p><p>Photo by Stefan Els.<br></p><p><br></p>
SU helping students BeWell through mentoring programmehttps://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=7064SU helping students BeWell through mentoring programmeCorporate Communication/Korporatiewe Kommunikasie [Rozanne Engel]<p>​</p><p>For more than forty years, Stellenbosch University (SU) has been helping newcomer students adjust to university life, overcome personal barriers and providing general psychosocial support through its BeWell Mentoring programme. </p><p>In 2013, the University decided to take a developmental approach that still catered for adjustment and problem solving, but also focused on the optimisation of the potential of all students in the system, including the mentees and mentors. </p><p>Since then, SU has adopted more of a holistic and systemic approach that concentrates on developing the whole person instead of only addressing problem areas, which resulted in the University following the BeWell model, which looks at wellness in terms of the physical, emotional, intellectual, occupational, social and spiritual dimensions within students.</p><p>According to Joy Petersen, Tracking and Mentor Coordinator at the Centre for Student Communities, the programme has helped the centre to keep track of their mentor engagement and activity. In addition, the BeWell tracking system, designed by Dr Alten du Plessis, Deputy Director: Tracking and Development at the SU's Division for Business Intelligence, helps the mentors to track their conversations, relationships and progress.  </p><p>“We really want to help students transition well into university life. Coming to the University and going through the higher education system can be a daunting experience. Students can put themselves under so much pressure to try and be perfect at it. Apart from focusing on the academic side, they should give themselves time to understand how things work and also become accustomed to their new living space and learning environment, which can help with their transition into university life," says Petersen.</p><p>Since 2013, more than 2 700 mentors and head mentors have assisted more than 19 000 first-year students in the BeWell programme. Each year, SU utilises approximately 600 trained mentors and head mentors to guide and help between 4 000 and 5 000 newcomer students (called mentees) during their first six to nine months at the University. </p><p>The mentors are predominantly senior students who undergo intensive training to help 500 to 600 mentoring groups that stay in more than 40 residences and private wards on either the main campus in Stellenbosch or on the Tygerberg campus. A team of university staff members, including residence heads, cluster coordinators and staff members from Student Affairs, also supports the team of mentors and head mentors.</p><p>“Going forward we want our second years to also apply to be mentors, because their experience is the closest to the first years. The selection and recruitment of mentors happen in the residences and PSOs. We have a training calendar for leadership positions and that training calendar starts in September and ends in August of the next year. So it is an intensive training programme that we do and the residences and PSOs have their training programmes that is unique to their environments and equip mentors. We evaluate and assess our training constantly to ensure that it's relevant and related to the mentor experience," says Petersen.</p><p>Students can find out more about the mentor programme at the Centre for Student Communities in Bosman Street on the Stellenbosch campus. Alternatively, they can visit <a href="/english/learning-teaching/student-affairs/csc">http://www.sun.ac.za/english/learning-teaching/student-affairs/csc</a> for more information.<br><br></p><p><br></p>
Update on Anti-GBV Working Groupshttps://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=7062Update on Anti-GBV Working GroupsStudent Affairs<p style="text-align:justify;">​The <em>Anti-GBV Movement SU</em> presented a <a href="/english/Documents/2019/GBV%20Memorandum.pdf">memorandum</a> to the Rectorate of Stellenbosch University (SU) on 9 September 2019. Joint working groups have been set up to develop a systemic response to combat gender-based violence (GBV) and to address the issues raised in the memorandum and management's subsequent <a href="/english/Documents/SU-management-response-to-anti-GBV-memo-20190918.pdf">response</a>. Each of the six working groups is overseen by a member of the Rectorate and has representation from University structures most relevant to the topics under discussion, as well as from students.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">The working groups report to the Rectorate, through the Senior Director: Student Affairs, Dr Choice Makhetha. The working groups will meet again in February 2020 and we aim to have a first draft report ready at the beginning of April 2020. This draft report will be handed over to Rectorate and from there, further work will be determined and communicated broadly to the SU community.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">To broaden access to the working groups, we invite students and staff to submit written inputs to the chairpersons of the working groups. Please feel free to get in touch with us:</p><ol><li><strong>Values and Principles</strong><br><strong> </strong><a href="mailto:mdt2@sun.ac.za">Ms Monica du Toit</a><br><br><strong> </strong></li><li><strong>Safety and Security</strong><br><strong> </strong><a href="mailto:vvdw@sun.ac.za">Dr Viljoen van der Walt</a><a href="mailto:vvdw@sun.ac.za"><br></a> <br></li><li><strong>Training and Awareness</strong><br><strong> </strong><a href="mailto:toniaovermeyer@sun.ac.za">Ms Tonia Overmeyer</a><a href="mailto:toniaovermeyer@sun.ac.za"><br></a> <br></li><li><strong>Residences and Structures</strong><br><strong> </strong><a href="mailto:rutha@sun.ac.za">Ms Ruth Andrews</a><a href="mailto:rutha@sun.ac.za"><br></a> <br></li><li><strong>Procedures and Processes</strong><br><strong> </strong><a href="mailto:feliciavr@sun.ac.za">Ms Felicia van Rooi</a><a href="mailto:feliciavr@sun.ac.za"><br></a> <br></li><li><strong>Mental Health, Alcohol and Substance Abuse</strong><br><strong> </strong><a href="mailto:mdunn@sun.ac.za">Dr Munita Dunn-Coetzee</a> </li></ol><p>If you wish to get in contact with a specific working group, please get in contact with the highlighted chairperson. All general enquiries about the Joint Working Groups can be directed to <a href="mailto:antigbv@sun.ac.za">antigbv@sun.ac.za</a>.</p>
‘SU committed to inclusivity and equality’ https://www.sun.ac.za/english/Lists/news/DispForm.aspx?ID=7055‘SU committed to inclusivity and equality’ Corporate Communication/Korporatiewe Kommunikasie [Rozanne Engel]<p>​​​<br></p><p>“If you want to grow, embrace diversity. It is an indispensable component of excellence."</p><p>With these words Stellenbosch University's Vice-Rector: Learning & Teaching, Prof Arnold Schoonwinkel, welcomed SU's more than 5 000 newcomer students, accompanied by their parents, during the official welcoming event held at Danie Craven Stadium on Thursday, 23 January 2020. </p><p>“We are committed to inclusivity and equality. We all come from different parts of the country and from different backgrounds. That's what makes university so appealing. Here you will be exposed to a variety of people and ideas … It is part of your development to get to know other people and to treat everyone with respect," Schoonwinkel said. </p><p>He congratulated the newcomers for getting this far in their journey and emphasised how special the newcomers were to the university, especially since SU received thousands of admission applications every year.</p><p>“We received 45 000 applications for admission this year, but only have space for about 5 500 newcomer first-year students – so if you made it here, you are really a top student. Parents can take comfort from the fact that this University works hard to create an environment conducive to student success. Maties has the highest graduation throughput of all universities in South Africa. Stellenbosch is a top university for top students," said Schoonwinkel. </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/s7wE8Wsmz2Q" frameborder="0"></iframe> </div><p><br></p><p>​He also emphasised the importance of students being responsible young adults, to seek help when they might experience challenges during their journey at SU and not to miss the opportunity to build lifelong connections.<br></p><p>“One comes to university not just for a degree, but for an education. And for that, you need exposure to a range of activities, beyond the classroom as well. Join one of our many student societies. Use this time to build strong networks for life."</p><p>The important event on the University's annual calendar consisted of fun, music, a formal welcoming, a human display of the number 2020 at the Danie Craven Stadium and a street march by students and parents to the iconic Victoria Street on campus. </p><p>Dr Choice Makhetha, Senior Director: Student Affairs at SU officially welcomed newcomers during the formal event and said she is proud that all the newcomers “chose Maties as their new home".</p><p>SU Prim Committee Chair Ms Ingrid Heydenrych also welcomed and encouraged newcomers. She said that students should take this step into higher education as an opportunity to make choices that will ultimately “contribute to a future that we all wish to see for this country, for Africa, and for the world at large".</p><p>“Being at University is an exceptional privilege in this country. You will immerse yourself in a global academic tradition that has been a main source of human development across centuries. You will see, learn and experience things that will challenge you, grow you and turn you into the exceptional person you are destined to become," said Heydenrych.<br></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/yvp99vfa8Ms" frameborder="0"></iframe> </div><p><br></p><p>After the formal welcoming, the new Maties walked from the stadium to Victoria Street as part of a Dream Launch that symbolised the start of their journey at SU to realise their dreams. The students each received a card on which they could write their dreams for themselves. </p><p>The cards were placed at various points on route to Victoria Street, where, for the next few days, these will be on display on trees wrapped in various colours, so anyone that goes down Victoria Street will pass by the dreams of all the newcomers.</p><p>Newcomer students can find more information on the University's website, <a href="/english/welcome/Pages/default.aspx"><span class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-2-5"><strong>www.sun.ac.za</strong></span></a><span class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-2-5">,</span> which contains all the necessary information on the full week's welcoming programme, information on the registration schedule, transport, personal safety, the library and free writing advice. ​<br></p><p><br></p><p>Click <a href="/english/management/Documents/20200123%20Ingrid%20Heydenrych%20Dream%20Launch.pdf"><strong class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-2-5">here</strong></a> to read the full speech of Ingrid Heydenrych.</p><p>Click <a href="/english/management/Documents/20200123%20Arnold%20Schoonwinkel%20WELKOM%20final.pdf"><strong class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-2-5">here</strong></a> to read the full speech of Prof Arnold Schoonwinkel.<br></p><p><br></p><p><br></p>