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New SRC announced SRC announcedCorporate Communication and Marketing Division/Afdeling Korporatiewe Kommunikasie en Bemarking - Sandra Mulder<p>​​​​The Stellenbosch University (SU) Election Committee has confirmed that the following students will serve in the 2021/22 Students' Representative Council (SRC), having been elected in an independent, free and fair general election:</p><ul><li>Precious Nhamo               </li><li>Alysa-Abby Kekana         </li><li>Unathi Ngumbela            </li><li>Viwe Kobokana </li><li>Almé Engelbrecht            </li><li>Ilan Meintjes      </li><li>Philip Visage      </li><li>Takadiwa Chipfumbu     </li><li>Chris Briel            </li></ul><p>The ex-officio members of the SRC will be as follows:</p><ul><li>Toni Solomon – Prim Committee chair<br></li><li>Christo van der Bank – Prim Committee vice-chair</li><li>George van Dyk – Academic Affairs Council chair</li><li>Neo Mokone – Societies Council chair</li><li>Pule Lebaka – Military Academy student captain </li><li>Eugene Nel – Senior Prim Committee chair</li></ul><p>The process will be concluded with the election of the new SRC chair and vice-chair on Monday 13 September, after which the specific SRC portfolios will be assigned internally, says election convenor Francesca Visagé. </p><p>The new SRC's term will run from the first day of the fourth term to the day before the fourth term of the following year.</p><p>On Thursday (9 September), Dr Choice Makhetha, senior director of Student Affairs, confirmed the election as independent, free and fair, and welcomed the fact that the elected SRC members were representative of SU's diverse student body. “The students elected to serve on the 2021/22 SRC reflect the diversity of Stellenbosch University," Dr Makhetha said. “It is very important to acknowledge that the student leaders represent far more than what their names suggest, as diversity is broad and complex. Students themselves have elected these members to represent them, and I believe they will be able to do that very well."</p><p>Maties had the opportunity to cast their votes between 30 August and midnight on 3 September through an online process. This was SU's second online SRC election in compliance with COVID-19 safety protocols. A total of 2 574 voters participated in voting for 11 candidates. </p><p>According to Dr Makhetha, the election convenor and her Election Committee team were strictly guided by the Student Constitution, the Student Code of Conduct, and the Rules of Elections. “The process was thorough and focused on details. Each stage of the election process was handled with the necessary sensitivity and confidentiality, and the entire process was well concluded." </p><p>Congratulating the new SRC members on their election, Dr Makhetha assured them that the University would support and guide them through their term of office. “To serve SU students at this level, the SRC needs to be ready to listen to the students, keep the voices of the students alive, and represent them well," she said. “They need to display the highest level of integrity and be prepared to learn. They should build a strong team right from the start and support one another. Congratulations, and thank you for making yourselves available for this role."</p><p>The SRC is the highest representative student structure at the University. It is subject to the authority of the University Council.</p><p>Prior to the SRC election, SU's Rector and Vice-Chancellor, Prof Wim de Villiers, encouraged students to vote, considering these student leaders' vital role at SU. SRC members represent all students in SU's statutory bodies such as the Institutional Forum, faculty boards, Senate and Council.    </p><p>For more information about the 2021/22 SRC election, visit the “Maties Elections" pages on <a href=""><strong>Facebook</strong></a> or <a href=""><strong>Instagram</strong></a>.<br> <br></p><p> </p><p> </p><table cellspacing="0" width="100%" class="ms-rteTable-default"><tbody><tr><td class="ms-rteTable-default" style="width:100%;">​</td></tr></tbody></table><p><br><br></p><p> </p><p> </p><p>   </p><p>​ </p><p><br></p>
SU celebrates Arbour Week by planting trees on campus celebrates Arbour Week by planting trees on campusFacilities Management<p>​Facilities Management's Landscaping and Environmental Sustainability teams collaborated to plant between 50 and 60 trees over the past couple of months on Stellenbosch University's campus, ending on a high note in celebrating Arbour Week during the first week of September 2021.<br></p><p>According to the initiators of the project, Christine Groenewald, engagement project coordinator, and Sivu Kweleta, senior horticulturist at Facilities Management, they, together with colleagues, suppliers and students have planted various trees on campus at buildings, such as the Engineering Faculty, the Old Main Building and the Krotoa Building – all at carefully selected spaces and allocated in appropriate areas within existing garden spaces.</p><p>"The collaborative effort between our environment sustainability and landscaping teams resulted in us planting 50 to 60 trees. We all know that trees create a greener and more oxygen-rich environment.  It also helps to cool down our urban areas, increase the resilience of our ecosystems, and increase carbon sequestration," says Groenewald.  The term carbon sequestration describes both natural and thoughtful processes by which CO2 is either removed from the atmosphere or diverted from emission sources and stored in the natural carbon sinks.</p><p>Groenewald says tree planting also enriches SU's biodiversity and help with the conservation of our biomes. The trees that were selected and planted varied from indigenous, water-wise and endemic trees, which adapt and survive in the weather conditions of the Stellenbosch area.</p><p>"Indigenous trees help create resilient ecosystems that can survive climate challenges like the recent drought we had. They help improve biodiversity and the sustainability of open spaces on campus. Most of the non-indigenous trees or plants use too much of our precious water resource, tend to become invasive, displace our rich biodiversity and disconnect our rich environmental, ecological services and are less resilient against pest and diseases Trees also help with the total ecosystem balance when one plants endemic and indigenous species," Kweleta says.</p><p>Nadeem Gafieldien, Director Property Services at Stellenbosch University's Facilities Management (SUFM)​, says the Environmental Sustainable Unit is currently rolling out a series of projects and engagements on campus that form part of SU's overall environmental sustainability strategy towards becoming a sustainable university. In using their division as a living laboratory, SUFM has since 2015 been putting systems and processes in place to start paving the way for the University to become a smart campus where data-led decision-making will result in solving problems and providing sustainable solutions for the future.</p><p>"We have even digitised our trees to measure and manage many of the influencing variables. In some cases, this information enabled us to replace some vegetation with the water-wise endemic and indigenous trees planted in the past few weeks," says Gafieldien.​</p><p><br></p>
Stellenbosch University Virtual Career Fair 24 August 2021 University Virtual Career Fair 24 August 2021Wilna Naudé<p><br><br></p><p style="text-align:justify;">The Unit for Graduand Career Services (Centre for Student Counselling and Development) is excited to present the first Stellenbosch University Virtual Career Fair on 24 August 2021, 9:00 – 16:00. This is an opportunity for SU students to network with employers on an SU-branded platform. Virtual career fairs have grown over the past few years and are here to stay. We invite our students to make the most of this opportunity. Make the virtual career fair part of your career journey.</p><p>Register now for the live event at <a href=""></a> and join in the chat with employers.</p><p>For any queries contact the Unit for Graduand Career Services at <a href=""></a>.<br><br></p><p>​<br></p>
SU and fitness company holds first-ever virtual sports and wellness day in support of #Move4Food and fitness company holds first-ever virtual sports and wellness day in support of #Move4Food Innovus <p>​​Stellenbosch University joined forces with a virtual health and fitness company, JEFF Fitness, in hosting the first-ever virtual sports and wellness day in the hope to set a new world record for #BiggestUniversityWorkout on Saturday, 28 August 2021, and raising funds for SU Alumni's # Move4Food initiative. A hallmark of #Move4Food is Stellenbosch University students, staff, alumni, and friends taking part in sporting events to raise funds to aid student hunger.<br></p><p>Some amazing people will join in on the fun and help in the fundraising cause, such as SA sport stars, Alumni champions from around the world, some of our Paralympic athletes currently on their way to the Tokyo Paralympics, students, celebrities and previous and current Maties Sport stars.</p><p>The event will take place virtually from 07h00 until 13h00 and consists of live workouts, competitions, talks, live "virtual" music, cook-offs and more.</p><p>SU's new Central Events and Conferencing Office (CECO) is the driving force behind this unique "Stellenbosch University-owned event". Liz Dirkse-van Schalkwyk, the event's main organiser, said they have partnered with JEFF fitness to co-host the event. JEFF brings to the event their expertise and know-how to host online events of this size and scope.  Supporting this event from within SU is the office of the COO, Maties Sport, SU Wellness and SU Alumni.</p><p> "JEFF is owned by SU Sport Science Alumni, Johno Meintjies, who is passionate about impacting people's lives through sports and wellness," says Dirkse-van Schalkwyk. “This fitness company was born in the recent lockdown through a free Facebook group that has grown into a global fitness company impacting lives in more than forty countries. With their recent success in virtual events of this nature the synergy just made sense for one of our alumni to take hands with us and do something special together with the rest of our Maties community around the world," says Dirkse-van Schalkwyk.</p><p>She said they would like Maties and Alumni from across the globe to join them and experience the "gees" of the broader local, national and international Stellenbosch community in coming together to support our students and global health and fitness.</p><p>"Join us and experience an iconic event from the comfort of your home and stand a chance to win prizes throughout a fun-filled morning," says Dirkse-van Schalkwyk.</p><p>She said they are finalising the programme of events and will communicate all the information on social media and SU's website over next week – leading up to the challenge. In the meantime, visit the event's website page <a href="">here</a> to take part.​</p><p><br></p>
Innovus celebrates women entrepreneurs celebrates women entrepreneursInnovus <p>​Innovus, Stellenbosch University's university-industry innovation interaction platform for the commercialisation of SU's assets, celebrates our women entrepreneurs – an opportunity to showcase SU's entrepreneurial talent.<br></p><p>"We've decided to launch a series of stories celebrating entrepreneurial women in Stellenbosch during this year's women's month," says Anita Nel, Chief Director: Innovation and Business Development. "Every year, more and more women approach us with their innovations and ideas to start small businesses and time and time again, we stand in awe of what they bring to us. We've seen it all: farming with insects, solutions for early detection of cancer, virtual reality therapy tools and eco-friendly shark barriers, to name but a few.," says Anita.</p><p><strong>Meet the women entrepreneurs of BioCODE</strong></p><p>This week, Innovus celebrates its first group of women entrepreneurs: The team from BioCODE. BioCODE develop point-of-care smart sensing solutions that detect novel circulating inflammatory molecules in the blood.</p><p>The directors of BioCODE are Prof Resia Pretorius, head of Stellenbosch University's Physiological Sciences Department in the Faculty of Science (Managing Director), Prof Anna-Mart Engelbrecht and Prof Willie Perold. Together with Este Burger and Simoné Turner, the team pride themselves that they are the first company to receive funding from the newly formed University Technology Fund (UTF) for developing their rapid inflammation biosensor. Innovus Technology Transfer has been working very closely with the team and supported them to protect their intellectual property, set up the company, enter into partnerships, raising funding etc.​</p><p><br></p><p>Read their full story <a href="">here</a><br></p><p>​<br></p>
Digital Wellbeing: Raising Awareness Wellbeing: Raising AwarenessUnit for Academic Counselling and Development<div>The worldwide COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the digitalisation of our work, social and learning environments at an unexpected rate. All over the world people’s agility were put to the test since March 2020 and many in-person events had to be cancelled, downsized, or alternative virtual activities were created. Virtual health walks, fundraisers and campaigns are now the order of the day. <br></div><div><br></div><div>A variety of online opportunities including lectures, work sessions, seminars, meetings, and even online social events can be accessed on the internet and through social media platforms. <br></div><div><br></div><div>The rapid digitalisation of the world has many advantages. It is however important that users of digital devices should be aware of its influence – positive and negative – on their general wellbeing. Digital wellbeing focusses on the impact that digitalisation has on people’s emotional, physical, social, and occupational health. It aims to increase people’s awareness of their relationships with technology and its influence on their lives. It also empowers people to take responsibility for their own wellbeing while functioning in the digital realm. </div><div><br></div><div>The Centre for Learning Technologies (CLT) and the Centre for Student Counselling and Development (CSCD) collaboratively developed an interactive open-source online publication titled <em>Entering the world of digital wellbeing</em>. The e-book consists of three main sections, namely:</div><div><br></div><div>•<span style="white-space:pre;"> </span>An introduction to digital wellbeing; </div><div>•<span style="white-space:pre;"> </span>s​elf-image, identities, and online relationships; and </div><div>•<span style="white-space:pre;"> </span>managing the role of digital technology in your life.</div><div><br></div><div>This e-book offers an interactive and exploratory journey and aims to equip the readers with knowledge and skills needed to take responsibility for their wellbeing in a digitalised world. </div><div><br></div><div>An introductory video can be accessed at </div><div>The online booklet can be accessed at   <br></div><div><br></div>
Stellenbosch University paving the way for becoming a smart sustainable campus University paving the way for becoming a smart sustainable campusPetro Mostert<p></p><p>In using their division as a <em>living laboratory</em>, Stellenbosch University's Facilities Management (SUFM) has since 2015 been implementing systems and processes to start paving the way for the Institution to become a smart campus where data-led decision-making will result in solving problems and providing solutions for the future.</p><p>Nicolette van den Eijkel, Chief Director at SUFM, says one of their strategic objectives for 2021–2025 is to move to a technology-enhanced campus through a process of digitalisation in collaboration with, among others, SU's Faculty of Engineering. </p><p>This directly supports SU's Vision 2040 of being a technology-enabled university.</p><p>Within the broader context of the United Nations' 17 sustainable development goals (SDG's)and South Africa's commitment by signing the agreement on climate change, and participation in the Global Alliance for Universities in Climate (GAUC), Stellenbosch University (SU) is following suit by reducing the University's carbon footprint to Net Zero Carbon and ensuring that 50% of all electricity used comes from renewable sources by 2025.</p><p>"We can only manage our utilities by measuring it," says Nadeem Gafieldien, Director: Property Services at SUFM. "That is why we've been working hard to put digital systems and infrastructure in place to measure our utilities such as water and electricity. Our smart metering systems provide us with valuable usage data which ensure that we can make effective decisions and react to real-time problems as and when they happen."</p><p>According to Gafieldien they have been installing smart metering systems at most of the buildings on SU's five campuses and embarked on various projects, which have already had a significant impact on energy, water and waste saving for the University.</p><p>"Our smart metering systems provide us with the agility to react fast and pro-actively plan for the future. It also enables us to verify our usage in terms of checking it against our billing information. This ability has already resulted in large cost savings."</p><p><strong>Data integration</strong></p><p>Recently SUFM joined forces with Prof Anton Basson and his team of researchers at the Department of Mechanical and Mechatronic Engineering to develop a system that can integrate all the different data sources using a reconfigurable approach to enable data-led decisions by various users. </p><p>"Our research deals with handling information in complex systems - systems where there are many different components and interactions. The system is dynamic and evolves over time, which means it changes as the system and needs change," says Basson.</p><p>"There are expensive commercial systems on the market, but we have decided to develop a unique system to provide an integrated information system to support SUFM in our decision making and reporting."</p><p>The approach taken for SUFM's Smart Sustainable Campus builds on the idea of using “Digital Twins" and “Microservices" to combine information from existing systems, which currently exist as "information silos", to enable detection of anomalies (e.g. to quickly identify water leaks), expedite monitoring and reporting (e.g. of electricity use and carbon footprint), record usage actual patterns (e.g. of lecture room occupancy), and other data-lead decision making.</p><p>“Our approach stems from the 'shoestring approach' formulated by Cambridge University to also help small and medium businesses (SMEs) who cannot afford expensive software to manage their information. The approach is that we build a basic framework, and companies can buy more modules to expand the system's capabilities," Basson said.</p><p>In this way the system can grow indefinitely as needs grow or new data sources are added.</p><p>While completing his PhD, Dr Anro Redelinghuys built the basic architecture for the software and is currently working to implement the system at SUFM, where the first commercial release is nearing completion. "Eventually, the system will be able to provide different users with different dashboards of actual usage patterns of utility information which will assist them with efficient decision-making," says Basson. </p><p><strong>Becoming a sustainable university</strong></p><p>In the meantime, the sustainability team at SUFM is hard at work to ensure that SU becomes a sustainable institution. "We work arduously to change our systems and processes to more sustainable energy sources and reduce the impact on the environment," says Gafieldien referring to initiatives such as creating their own recycling plant, installing PV panels on the roofs of SU's buildings, consolidating and reducing air conditioning systems and generators, as well as installing greywater systems at residences and faculty buildings on the various campuses – all projects that resulted in further cost savings and contributing towards the institution's sustainability goals.</p><p>"We have even digitised our trees to measure, among others, their water usage. Thanks to this information, we have been able to replace some vegetation with water-wise endemic and indigenous trees."<br><br></p>
Matie shop goes online from 1 July 2021 shop goes online from 1 July 2021Innovus <p>Stellenbosch University's (SU) popular Matie Shop opened its online shop on Thursday, 1 July 2021, offering its whole range of SU-branded apparel, gifts and accessories.<br></p><p>“We are very excited to offer our customers this convenient way of shopping," says Matie Shop's newly appointed manager, Lara Cronje. “To celebrate this milestone, we will have exciting specials throughout July – so please watch this space."</p><p>For Cronje, who joined Innovus three months ago, the opening of the online shop is the culmination of careful planning and testing of the online commerce environment.</p><p>“Our team has been testing online sales for a while now, and there is a huge demand for our products to be available online – especially amongst our alumni, students that are studying remotely and the broader university community."</p><p>“We receive a lot of queries from alumni living abroad, and hope to provide them with the opportunity to access all SU branded products from anywhere across the world in the near future as it will be a dream come true. In the meantime, local Maties can shop away!"</p><p>Apart from stocking SU products, residences and faculties will also have access to this online store to sell their branded SU merchandise through a central platform.</p><p>Keep an eye on social media and visit Maties Shop online at from 1 July 2021 for all your SU needs. Follow them on Facebook and Instagram to stay up to date with the latest specials.<br></p><p>​<br></p>
SU Equality Unit moves to Responsibility Centre: Learning and Teaching Equality Unit moves to Responsibility Centre: Learning and TeachingEquality Unit<div>​​The Unit will now report directly to Deputy Vice-Chancellor (DVC): Learning and Teaching, Prof Deresh Ramjugernath.<br></div><div><br></div><div>The move comes after much thought had been given to the positioning of the Unit within the University, and how to best provide services and support to staff and students. </div><div><br></div><div>“I am very happy with the repositioning of the Equality Unit as a functionary that reports directly to the Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Learning and Teaching. This institutional strategy will enhance the efforts to address gender-based violence (GBV), sexual harassment, unfair discrimination, as well as all the other initiatives managed by the Unit, and will enable an efficient implementation, monitoring, and evaluation thereof in an integrated action plan at SU,” said DVC: Learning and Teaching, Prof Deresh Ramjugernath.</div><div><br></div><div>The Equality Unit plays an important institutional role in highlighting and combatting unfair discrimination and harassment, and GBV, and provides staff and students with training, development, and support services for HIV, STIs, gender non-violence, and sexualities. </div><div><br></div><div>“Our shift to the Responsibility Centre: Learning and Teaching will have direct impact on our institutional efficiency and provide additional engagement and support to SU staff, the student body, leadership and various SU structures. Through this realignment, we affirm our commitment to the staff and students of SU to root out inequality and to keep trust and credibility,” said Jaco Greeff Brink, Head of the Equality Unit. </div><div><br></div><div>Brink added: “The foundation of our work is rooted in the South African Constitution, Bills of Rights, and the Unfair Discrimination and Harassment and HIV/Aids policies of SU, so that we make a distinctive contribution not only to the SU community, but to intentionally influence our broader society, as well as contribute in a VUCA (volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous) world through empathy, leadership, critical engagement, review and humble assertiveness.” </div><div><br></div><div>With this shift, the intent is to engage more with the SU community through initiatives that are being developed to strengthen the functioning of the Unit and the services it provides. Currently the Unit is working to highlight cyberbullying through its anti-cyberbullying campaign which will launch on 26 July 2021. It has launched faculty and departmental information roadshows that gives insight on the support services offered to staff. </div><div><br></div><div>The Unfair Discrimination and Harassment and HIV/Aids policies are also currently under review. New additions will strengthen the guidelines which govern the work done by the Equality Unit, specifically on GBV. Implementing an online reporting, monitoring and evaluation tool is a priority and will be crucial to determine whether the work being done is effective and integrated across SU stakeholders. </div><div><br></div><div>“Equality is a crucial constitutional principle, and the Equality Unit at Stellenbosch University plays an institutional role. Therefore, DSAf realised how important it was to drive the process to give the Unit the stature and importance it deserves,” said Dr Choice Makhetha, Senior Director: Student Affairs. </div><div><br></div><div>“The Equality Unit needed to report directly to Rectorate level, to speed up decision making and also to hold the institution accountable on critical equality issues.</div><div><br></div><div>“Our colleagues at Equality Unit will remain very close to our hearts as they begin this new journey and will continue to be our partners in efforts to address equality issues. We wish them well and I know that they will continue to serve SU exceptionally well,” she added.</div><div><br></div><div>With this shift, it is hoped that the Unit can better support SU staff and students to bring about equality and a transformative experience for all at SU.  </div><div><br></div><div>The Equality Unit would like to extend a special thanks to Dr Makhetha, Dr Munita Dunn-Coetzee, Director at CSCD, and colleagues at CSCD and DSAf for their invaluable support over the years.  </div><div><br></div><div><strong>A reminder of the support services offered to staff and students</strong></div><div><br></div><div>The Equality Unit provides support services to staff and students. These are testing, counselling, and training on HIV and STIs; training and development, counselling and support to LGBTQIA+ individuals; gender non-violence support and training; and mediation services to resolve conflict resolution. Staff and students can report incidents of unfair discrimination and harassment, gender-based violence, and sexual harassment by contacting the Unit at A case officer will be assigned to deal with the complaint. For HIV-related services, contact For staff, there is a confidential ethics and reporting hotline which is independently administered by KPMG. Staff can contact 0800 20 45 49 or </div><div><br><br></div><p><br></p>
Applications are open for SU Techpreneurship Centre’s second Data Science and Entrepreneurship Bootcamp 2021 are open for SU Techpreneurship Centre’s second Data Science and Entrepreneurship Bootcamp 2021Petro Mostert<p>​​Stellenbosch University LaunchLab's newly-established SU Techpreneurship Centre (SU TPC) will be hosting its second <em>Data Science, Machine Learning and Entrepreneurship</em> <em>Bootcamp </em>in July this year after the first cohort successfully completed the programme in March 2021.</p><p>The SU TPC is a ​new data science and entrepreneurial development upskilling initiative developed by the SU LaunchLab, the University's technology and entrepreneurship incubator, in collaboration with the SU School for Data Science and Computational Thinking. The Centre offers courses that bridge the gap between technology and entrepreneurship by providing candidates with both in-depth programming skills in data science and machine learning and how to use these skills in the industry. </p><p>SU LaunchLab CEO Joshua Romisher says they are excited to launch the next programme after successfully ensuring that 90% of the first cohort's participants have landed interviews with partner companies after taking the first course in February. </p><p>The second programme will consist of a 4-week, full-time immersive Bootcamp during the July-August winter holiday. Experts from the SU LaunchLab and SU School for Data Science and Computational Thinking will cover a range of topics such as machine learning techniques, algorithms and models, data exploration and analysis in Python, and soft skills such as SCRUM, Agile and Kanban.</p><p>SU TPC Coordinator Daniel Maloba says the programme, which will run during the winter break (13 July to 6 August 2021), is open to anyone from all academic levels and backgrounds to apply, and that multidisciplinary applicants and backgrounds are very much encouraged. “The course is coding-intensive; therefore, we recommend that candidates understand programming principles, but it does not matter if you have no specific programming experience."</p><p>One of the participants of the first programme, Tanya Meyer, says the SU TPC was instrumental in fast-tracking progress for her MEng research project in Machine Learning and Data Science. “It skyrocketed my Python programming skillset whilst developing my previously non-existent, soft tech skills with lots of guest speaker talks, entrepreneurship sessions and colleague collaboration."</p><p>Maloba said participants seeking internships should look no further than enrolling for the programme. “We have great industry partners who are always looking for new talent," said Maloba. </p><p>Applications opened on 3 May 2021 and will close on 18 June 2021. Applicants are admitted on a rolling basis, so interested candidates are encouraged to apply as soon as possible. </p><p>The total cost of the 4-week, full-time programme is as follows: SU participant (SU students, staff, recent grads, alumni, etc.): R10,000 excl.; R11,500 VAT incl.</p><p>For more information or to apply for the programme, click on this <a href="">link</a>. Anyone wishing to learn more about the initiative - applicants, partners looking for young talent, or just in general -  can contact  Daniel Maloba at <a href=""></a> .​</p><p>​<br></p>