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SU student's innovation is among the top three solutions for world challenges student's innovation is among the top three solutions for world challenges Corporate Communication and Marketing/Korporatiewe Kommunikasie en Bemarking - Sandra Mulder​A digital application developed by an engineering student from Stellenbosch University (SU) that provides information about water quality in water supply systems took third place at a recent international gathering in New York, where more than 250 young leaders from 61 countries pitched solutions for sustainable development.<p>Stanley Chindikani Msiska, a PhD student at SU's Faculty of Engineering, returned with great pride and excitement from Camp 2030, a project of Unite 2030, a non-profitable global youth community striving to achieve the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by the year 2030. </p><p>Unite 2030 believes young people can succeed in achieving these SDGs, especially regarding the global challenges of poverty, inequality, injustice, climate change and water and sanitation.</p><p>“I'm overwhelmed that my innovation was selected by the judges as a winning solution. This is the news that I worked very hard for and hoped for," Msiska said about his achievement. “I thank the Lord even more because this is the kind of success that is going to transform the lives of millions of people who live in despair and suffering."</p><p>Msiska and Stefani Terblanche, a BA student in international studies, represented SU at this global event. The delegates were divided into 36 mixed groups that focused on different SDG challenges.  <img src="/english/PublishingImages/Lists/dualnews/My%20Items%20View/Camp30SDG_1.jpg" alt="Camp30SDG_1.jpg" class="ms-rtePosition-2" style="margin:5px;width:400px;height:267px;" /><br></p><p>Msiska's group came up with a website application, Maji, as a solution for the SDG for water and sanitation. “Maji" means water in Tumbuka, a language spoken in Northern Malawi. The app forms part of his postgraduate engineering studies at SU on existing water quality maintenance challenges in Malawi, his home country. He is also a lecturer in chemical engineering at the Malawian University of Technology and Sciences.</p><p>Maji is a digital platform that provides maintenance services and information about water quality in water supply systems, especially in developing countries. The process will start with its first implementation in Lilongwe, the Malawian capital.</p><p>Msiska's team members were Ashley Wunsch (Canada), Felipe Contreras (Mexico), Muskaan Waraich (Canada) and Inbar Erez (Israel). This team and Unite 2030's support is backing him to get his innovation implemented. “What captivates me even more, is looking at how people and institutions are excited about the innovation and support its implementation," said Msiska.</p><p>He didn't want to disclose much detail about how Maji will work because the patent has not been registered yet. However, he was willing to reveal that the Maji web app will operate on smartphones, computers and even through text messages if there is no internet. </p><p>Msiska said that this innovation will also address the challenge of unemployment. “The digital platform will create jobs because community members will be employed for data collection about water and systems.</p><p>“I will now be actively involved with stakeholders in implementing Maji." He added that he needs further support as the implementation will require more resources.</p><p>Terblanche was also overwhelmed by her “amazing experience" at Camp 2030 and by her group, which focused on finding solutions for gender-based violence and gender inequality.</p><p>“It was so interesting learning about other cultures and countries on such a scale, and hearing what people are doing within their communities and the world. I also learned about the different issues that different people face regarding gender-based discrimination in the workplace, women's health rights, trans-healthcare issues and more," Terblanche said.</p><p>Noel Bekkers, Head of the Concordia Residence, where Msiska is a resident, congratulated him on his achievement and praised him for his<strong> </strong>commitment to<strong> </strong>his PhD studies and his passion for accepting challenging assignments as an academic and an entrepreneur.</p><p>Bekkers credited various staff members for their additional efforts to enable Msiska and Terblanche to attend Camp 2030, especially Michelle Pietersen, programme manager at the Division of Social Impact, for making last-minute arrangements.</p><ul><li>Msiska can be contacted on +265884269861 (WhatsApp), +27633867094 (direct call), stanleycmsiska (Instagram), Stanley Chindikani Msiska (Facebook)<br></li></ul><ul style="list-style-type:disc;"><li>Terblanche's contact details are 0814446016 or Instagram: @stefani_terblanche</li><li>For more information about Camp 2030, visit the <a href="">Unite 2030 website</a> at <a href=""></a></li></ul><p>​ Main picture: Supplied<br></p><p>Portrait photo: Stefan Els<br></p>
SU represented at science diplomacy school in Venice represented at science diplomacy school in VeniceSU International <p>​​From 18 to 24 July 2022, the Venice International University (VIU) hosted a summer programme on science diplomacy. Among the participants from across the globe were Simohn Engelbrecht and Thami Mohlobo, both from Stellenbosch University (SU) International.<br></p><p>Science diplomacy is a new form of diplomacy that refers to the use of international scientific collaborations to address common global problems and build constructive partnerships. In the field of international relations and global policymaking, it is used as an umbrella term for any number of formal or informal technical, research-based, academic and engineering exchanges.  </p><p>“Themes covered included the fundamentals of science diplomacy, the challenges of public perception about natural technical solutions, solid waste management solutions, food security, global public health and risk management," says Simohn, project coordinator of the AUDA-NEPAD Centre of Excellence in Science, Technology and Innovation, which is located in SU International. “We also deliberated on how prepared we are as a globe for pandemics. We concluded that creating resilient and sustainable global and national systems requires the presence of government, science, civil society as well as the private sector." </p><p>Thami, coordinator of International Support, adds: “In discussing questions around Covid-19 and how the approach to the pandemic was communicated in our respective countries, scientists' duty to present empirical information to the public was emphasised."</p><p>The programme included a field trip to MOSE, an experimental project intended to protect the city of Venice and the Venetian lagoon from flooding. The integrated system consists of rows of mobile gates that are able to isolate the Venetian lagoon temporarily from the Adriatic Sea during high tides. “The trip to MOSE raised our awareness about how governments often need to rely on technical solutions to address environmental problems," Thami says. </p><p>Outside the formal programme, delegates explored the nooks and crannies of the 'Floating City' and delight in quintessential Venetian cuisine. “The time in between formal sessions allowed me to traverse culturally rich Venice and establish lifelong friendships, all of us united to improve livelihoods and take care of our beautiful yet delicate world," says Simohn. “It was inspiring and magical." </p><p>The visit exceeded Thami's expectations too: “I found it enriching not only in my professional capacity working in internationalisation, but also as a PhD student in Political Science with a particular interest in public diplomacy and international exchange programmes. I am happy that I was able to draw similarities between science diplomacy and public diplomacy. I hope this experience will strengthen my PhD research and my ability to expand mobility partnerships at SU International." </p><p>Ironically, they spent one night in darkness due to a blackout. “This made me reflect on the current loadshedding situation in South Africa," Thami adds smilingly.</p><p>* VIU is a <a href="">consortium of 20 universities</a> from across the world with an autonomous campus on the Venetian island of San Servolo. It seeks to develop joint academic, research and capacity-building programmes across disciplines, continents, languages and cultures. SU has been a VIU member since 2019.<br></p><p>​<br></p>
SU students attend Ghana to the World programme students attend Ghana to the World programme Mmanape Hlungwane<p>​​<span style="text-align:justify;">​Stellenbosch University (SU) International's Centre for Collaboration in Africa (CCA) afforded three SU students the opportunity to participate in the Ghana to the World (GTW) summer school hosted by the University of Ghana (UG) on 30 June and 1 July 2022. UG is one of SU's comprehensive African bilateral partners.</span></p><p style="text-align:justify;">The GTW programme allows students to learn about Ghana and West Africa while they participate in fun activities hosted on the UG campus. Telling West Africa's story from the perspective of Ghana, the programme promotes cross-cultural immersion and engages students from across the world in conversations on Africa-centred issues. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">Activities were divided into three components: an elective course or research project to spark conversation on Africa-specific topics, volunteerism to expose students to the Ghanaian community setting, and a cultural experience with visits to historic sites and attractions. This year, the volunteerism component took the form of a collaboration with the non-profit ActionAid Ghana, which works to reduce poverty and advance social justice and gender equality in the West African nation. GTW participants were able to assist at a workshop that supported community leaders to end violence against women and girls in their immediate environment. The students also attended a special Children's Parliamentary session to mark the International Day of the African Child. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">GTW lectures covered topics such as African history, the diaspora and Ghanaian public health care, as well as Twi language classes. Experiential learning experiences included visits to cultural sites such as the Assin Manso Slave River site, where participants learned about the infamous trans-Atlantic slave trade, and the Elmina Slave Castle, which was one of the most important stops on the slave trade route. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">Students also got to visit the bustling Makola Market and Kakum National Park, explore the Ghanian capital city of Accra and sample the local cuisine. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">“Ghana to the World was a fun, enriching and intellectually stimulating experience, and I would recommend it to anyone," says one of SU's participants, Stefni van der Walt. “The organisers made sure that we got to know the Ghanaian culture through food, dance and many other valuable experiences, which made the trip an unforgettable adventure!" </p><p style="text-align:justify;">For more on other summer programmes that SU participates in, visit:<a href="/english/SUInternational/current-students/attend-a-partner-summer-school"></a>.<br></p><p><br></p>
Helping international students find a home away from home international students find a home away from homeBirgit Ottermann<p>​Finding and settling into your student accommodation can be challenging – even more so as an international student still trying to find your feet in an unfamiliar country. Stellenbosch University (SU) International understands this, which is why a group of staff are dedicated to the task of helping international students find their home away from home. This enables students to focus on their studies and everything else Stellenbosch has to offer.<br></p><p>According to Grant Leukes, SU International's senior coordinator of Immigration and Student Housing, their chief focus is short-term accommodation for postgraduate students, the majority of whom are semester students. “We support short-term students, affiliated researchers, who usually come for about two to four months, as well as postdoctoral fellows," he explains. “And we also have some accommodation options available for visiting academics."</p><p>Since semester students have to compete with degree-seeking students for housing, especially at the beginning of the year, SU International recommends that international students apply for accommodation at the same time as their application for admission, even before they have a student number. “That way, they will have received confirmation of their accommodation by the time we send out contracts, which means they can simply pay their deposit into their student account," Grant says. “Everything, including payment for accommodation, is centralised by us. This makes it much easier for students to manage."</p><p>Many of the students are placed at <a href="">Academia</a>, <a href="">Concordia</a> and other on-campus housing facilities. Both Concordia and Academia offer self-catering apartments with kitchens. “Whereas Concordia provides bedding and kitchen utensil rental, we assist Academia students to order everything they need through an external rental company, to be delivered a day before they arrive."</p><p>Asked whether they ever have to scramble at the last minute to secure accommodation, Grant says this is no longer the case. “It used to happen in the past, but students are now required to show proof of accommodation as part of their visa application, about six to eight weeks before arrival. So, now at least we know that when the students arrive, they have accommodation ready." One exception is when students write their home university exams late in the SU semester, and their exchange depends on their exam results. “However, we do have some spare rooms available for students who apply late as a result of this," Grant adds. </p><p>The generally high rental tariffs in Stellenbosch remain challenging, though. “The more affordable accommodation options are off-campus, and often also in nearby towns or on farms. This is not ideal, as most international students don't have cars, and public transport is not always reliable," he says. “Luckily, this is slowly changing as more and more student accommodation is being built in Stellenbosch, which will help make rental more competitive."</p><p>Suitable accommodation for families is also in short supply. “Our more senior postgraduate students from Africa and sometimes also Europe often come with their spouse and kids. Since they require a more private and quiet space, we can't place them in a student community. At the same time, renting a house on a student budget or bursary is expensive."</p><p>Despite having to navigate these challenges, however, working at SU International has been extremely rewarding, says Grant, including in terms of the strong bonds formed over the years. “We've seen many international students arriving and settling in at the University. Some love it so much that they end up staying for another semester or another degree," he says. “One became such a great friend of mine that he was the best man at my wedding, and now is the godfather to my son."<br></p><p>​<br></p>
Final preparations for first set of IEB-ISC exams preparations for first set of IEB-ISC examsSU International <p>​<span style="text-align:justify;">I</span><span style="text-align:justify;">t is nearly all systems go for the first set of examinations for the South African Independent Examinations Board's International Secondary Certificate (IEB-ISC) – a new, affordable yet quality African-centred school-leaving certificate. Learners will write the first examinations at the end of 2022, which means that the first cohort of IEB-ISC school leavers will be applying to universities across the globe in 2023. </span></p><p style="text-align:justify;">The IEB has entrusted the quality assurance of the qualification to Stellenbosch University (SU). <a href="">SU's Unit for International Credentialing</a> has been hard at work appointing 35 external moderators to evaluate the examination papers for the 32 subjects on offer. This is crucial to ensure that the IEB-ISC assessments are valid, fair and reliable. SU has also established three expert committees to oversee curriculum and assessment, standardisation and quality assurance governance respectively. Ultimately, this will enable SU not only to verify the quality of the qualification, but to certify it as well.  </p><p style="text-align:justify;">According to a 2021 assessment by UK Ecctis, which represents the United Kingdom (UK) in all matters relating to international qualifications, the IEB-ISC is comparable to the UK's AS-levels, Australia's Senior Secondary Certificate of Education, and Kenya's Certificate of Secondary Education. Universities South Africa (USAf) also concluded that candidates who obtain the IEB-ISC with merit or at an advanced level, and are offered a place at a South African higher education institution, will have met the minimum requirements for admission to a degree programme.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Currently, the certificate is being offered in schools in Namibia, Eswatini and Mozambique, with the potential for further roll-out to other countries. <br><br></p><p>​<br></p>
Hybrid ADA winter school ushers in return to face-to-face offering ADA winter school ushers in return to face-to-face offeringSU International <p>​<span style="text-align:justify;">With the aim to strengthen excellence in doctoral education across Africa, the African Doctoral Academy (ADA) at Stellenbosch University (SU) hosts seasonal doctoral schools as well as monthly webinars. The pandemic forced activities into the online space since the 2020 winter school. However, as the world is slowly emerging from the Covid-19 crisis, the 2022 winter school took place in hybrid format.</span><br></p><p style="text-align:justify;">The event, hosted from 29 June to 15 July 2022, comprised 12 courses that attracted over 120 participants. Seventeen enrolled for the in-person “Introduction to SPSS" course, which SU's Dr Cindy Steenekamp presented from 4 to 8 July. Participants received valuable information on using the SPSS (Statistical Package for the Social Sciences) software to analyse their research data. The course content was well received, as the following comments illustrate: </p><p style="text-align:justify;">“Attending this ADA course has sparked my interest in statistical data analysis. It has also enlightened me on how to properly structure the questions on my research questionnaire. I can confidently say that I am more knowledgeable now."</p><p style="text-align:justify;">“The course experience was fantastic! The exercises and assignments were appropriate and sealed in my understanding of how to analyse data using SPSS."</p><p style="text-align:justify;">For the remaining 11 courses on offer, participants tuned in online. These courses covered topics such as research methodology, data analysis, writing and publishing, and project management skills.</p><p style="text-align:justify;"><img src="/english/PublishingImages/Lists/dualnews/My%20Items%20View/Picture1.jpg" alt="Picture1.jpg" style="margin:5px;width:555px;" /><br></p><p style="text-align:justify;"><strong><em>ADA school goes hybrid: </em></strong><em>Collage of online and in-person participants in the 2022 ADA winter school</em>.<br></p><p style="text-align:justify;">Despite the immense success of the online ADA schools, participants, organisers and presenters alike are now looking forward to what will hopefully be a fully face-to-face ADA summer school in January 2023. This will again allow for the personal interaction and physical immersion in the beautiful Stellenbosch region that the pre-Covid ADA offerings were known for.<br></p><p>​<br></p>
ESI heads to Windhoek for first in-person joint school heads to Windhoek for first in-person joint school SU International <p>​<span style="text-align:justify;">Having been launched in 2020, just as Covid-19 hit our shores, the Emerging Scholars Initiative (ESI) at Stellenbosch University (SU) has had to make do with online activities. But this all changed in June 2022, when the initiative was able to co-host its first face-to-face joint school with the Centre for Research Services at the University of Namibia (UNAM). The school took place at UNAM's main campus in Windhoek from 12 to 24 June.</span><br></p><p style="text-align:justify;">ESI is based in SU International's African Centre for Scholarship (ACS) and seeks to enhance scholarship on the continent by hosting joint schools with other African institutions, developing and capacitating doctoral students and emerging researchers. For the Namibian school, expert facilitators from SU's ACS, Centre for Higher and Adult Education as well as the Writing Lab collaborated with scholars from UNAM to present two workshops – one on scientific communication for doctoral students and postdoctoral fellows, and the other on postgraduate supervision for early-career academics. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">The response to the initial call for applications across UNAM's campuses was overwhelming. Over 120 applications were received for the two workshops. This indicated both a need and an appetite for scholarship development. In the end, 72 participants, including five doctoral students and two early-career academics from SU, attended. Participants represented diverse disciplines, from science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) to social sciences. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">The success of the school was largely thanks to sound collaboration between the two hosts. SU and UNAM worked jointly to identify imminent scholars at both institutions to facilitate the courses, and co-designed the curriculum so that it met participants' needs. This has laid a strong foundation for future collaboration, not only between SU and UNAM, but across the entire Africa, to build capacity among our scholars.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">ESI is planning more joint schools in both online and in-person format this year. <br></p><p style="text-align:justify;"><img src="/english/PublishingImages/Lists/dualnews/My%20Items%20View/Picture2.jpg" alt="Picture2.jpg" style="margin:5px;" /><br></p><p style="text-align:justify;"><br></p><p style="text-align:justify;"><strong><em>Face-to-face, finally: </em></strong><em>Participants, facilitators and the organising team pictured at the opening ceremony of the first in-person Emerging Scholars Initiative (ESI) joint school co-hosted by Stellenbosch University (SU) and the University of Namibia (UNAM) in Windhoek in June 2022. Front, from left: Prof Jairos Kangira (UNAM course facilitator), Dr Brent Abrahams (ESI coordinator), Prof Nelago Indongo (UNAM Centre for Research Services director), Dr Ellen Namhila (UNAM pro-vice-chancellor), Ms Selene Delport (SU facilitator), Dr Armas Shikongo and Prof Davis Mumbengegwi (both from UNAM).</em><br></p><p>​<br></p>
Join our journey of transformation our journey of transformationProf Hester Klopper, Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Strategy, Global and Corporate Affairs<p>​​Having just celebrated Women's Month (August) in South Africa, Stellenbosch University (SU) again committed to honouring women in all walks of life and ensuring that we play a key role in transforming communities both locally and across the globe.<br></p><p>It was on 9 August 1956 that some 20 000 women marched on the Union Buildings in Pretoria, the official seat of government, protesting against the then apartheid government's attempts to control black women's movements through the imposition of pass laws. It was a dark era in our country's history, when discrimination against women was the norm.</p><p>Today, SU – and indeed our country – works towards intentional and structured transformation so that we may achieve profound change in our places, people and programmes. In this pursuit, we are guided by the University's values of equity, compassion, accountability, respect and excellence.</p><p>Our transformative approach is also clear to see in our global practices – not only in the way we seek to advance gender equality, but in other respects as well. In fact, SU International is housed in a building named after Krotoa, a strong African female voice in the history of resistance to colonialism in South Africa. </p><p>One of SU's key strategic objectives is to provide a transformative student experience. We believe that every student's engagement with SU should transform their views of the world and play a part in enabling global transformation.</p><p>We are busy finalising our policy on transformation, which will set in motion practical steps to create a diverse and inclusive campus community.</p><p>Our partners and networks across the world count among our most valued stakeholders to help us produce students (and research) that will transform the world and ensure greater dignity, healing, social justice, freedom and equality. These are the global competencies we aim to instil in our students – whether South Africans on Study Abroad opportunities, or incoming students from our partner institutions elsewhere.</p><p>Our Women's Month celebrations have reminded us that our journey of transformation is an ongoing one. We invite our partners and networks to join us on this journey so that we can produce students equipped to bring about profound change in the world.<br></p><p>​<br></p>
SASUF gears up to “Go Digital” in September gears up to “Go Digital” in SeptemberSU International <p><span style="text-align:justify;">I</span><span style="text-align:justify;">n June the contact persons of the various South African institutions forming part of the </span><a href="" style="text-align:justify;">South Africa–Sweden University Forum (SASUF)</a><span style="text-align:justify;"> gathered in person at the Swedish embassy in Pretoria. Delegates  discussed how research and innovation cooperation between South Africa and Sweden could be enhanced, and how this could be implemented at the next large network event, SASUF Goes Digital, scheduled for 19–23 September 2022.</span><br></p><p style="text-align:justify;">Due to the pandemic, this was SASUF's first face-to-face meeting in two years. The proceedings were opened by the Swedish ambassador to South Africa. Apart from planning the upcoming network event, staff from the different institutions also shared best practices in advancing the network and its opportunities at their respective universities. Attending on behalf of Stellenbosch University (SU) were Sarah van der Westhuizen, manager of the Centre for Global Engagement, and Kirwan Adams, coordinator of Multilateral Collaboration and Information Management. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">SASUF Goes Digital will be a virtual research and innovation (R&I) week and will include workshops, seminars, leadership meetings, panel discussions and funding opportunities. A call for applications for virtual exchange grants will be issued during the event, with awards of between R250 000 and R400 000 on offer. The next in-person SASUF R&I week will be hosted in South Africa from 27 to 31 March 2023. While the event will be similar in content to the online event, the funding opportunities made available here will take the form of research mobility funding (R85 000–R170 000). To be eligible for funding from either of these events, at least one of the researchers involved in an application must have participated in the R&I week concerned. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">Over the past five years, SU has been fortunate to be part of 13 successful SASUF projects, equating to a cumulative R2 million in project funding from the network. The University also hosted the 2019 R&I week on Stellenbosch campus.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">For more on SU's network, <a href="/english/SUInternational/partnerships-and-networks/networks-consortia">click here</a>.<br></p><p>​<br></p>
#WomenofSU: Dr Nyambura Mwagiru – “Keep moving towards your dreams" Dr Nyambura Mwagiru – “Keep moving towards your dreams" Corporate Communication and Marketing/Korporatiewe Kommunikasie en Bemarking<p>​Dr Nyambura Mwagiru is at the helm of Tygerberg International, located in the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences (FMHS). She enjoys working in the challenging, multifaceted and dynamic space of advancing the internationalisation mandate of Stellenbosch University (SU). <br></p><p>As part of SU's Women's Month celebrations, Nyambura tells us more about her role and the leadership qualities it requires.</p><p><strong>Tell us more about your role at Stellenbosch University.</strong></p><p>I head up Tygerberg International, which provides internationalisation advisory, liaison and support services, to FMHS departments, divisions, and research centres. I work closely with a superb team of specialised international higher education practitioners to advance the FMHS strategic vision and internationalisation objectives, supporting the successful application and admission of international candidates to take part in high calibre, cutting-edge clinical and non-clinical research and training activities offered by FMHS at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels.</p><p>The role includes assessing and strengthening FMHS's institutional partnerships with universities and organisations abroad guided by FMHS Vice-Dean, Research and Internationalisation and in tandem with SU International (SUI). We also facilitate and aim to expand international mobility and exchanges through global engagement with potential applicants and strategic partners.<br></p><p><strong>What do you enjoy most about this role?</strong></p><p>What I enjoy largely is the opportunity to align FMHS's internationalisation strategy with that of the institution more broadly. As a governance practitioner, I also enjoy and gain from engaging with the FMHS Internationalisation Committee (FMHS-IC) which provides a valuable forum for committee members to discuss their internationalisation approaches and efforts within FMHS departments, divisions and research centres.</p><p>The role incorporates a strong regulatory and compliance focus, so I value the constant learning generated from policy-related engagements with external bodies such as the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA) among others. In addition, I attain positive benefits through ongoing consultations with current partners and potential collaborating institutions across the world who are interested in engaging with FMHS, Stellenbosch University. Institutional partnership development is a gradual process, so it is most rewarding to establish international cooperation initiatives, co-mobilise adequate support mechanisms and see these consultations bear fruit in terms of new inward and outward mobility pathways for students and staff. <br></p><p>I highly regard the wealth of interaction with FMHS teaching, professional support and research staff, as well as with our international students. Finally, I also appreciate insights acquired through working with my internationalisation colleagues to improve our internal processes and increase the efficiency of our services and stakeholder engagement.<br></p><p><strong>What do you think are the key leadership qualities required to fulfil your role?</strong></p><ul><li><strong>Being agile and responsive</strong>, as the demands of the role continue to change as new queries test the capacity of our institutional mechanisms to respond. </li><li><strong>Patience and close attention to detail</strong>, especially in terms of understanding policies, processes and procedures in the Tygerberg International, FMHS and SU environment.</li><li><strong>An appreciation for diverse perspectives</strong> enables one to accommodate the interests of multiple stakeholders and optimise solutions that are inclusive and sustainable for all parties.</li><li><strong>Creativity, openness to new ideas, and a collaborative approach</strong>. This includes an ability to negotiate and create suitable inclusive forums where views, perspectives and insights can be shared.</li><li>And ultimately also<strong> an awareness of the local and international climate</strong> and <strong>application of responsible and transformative leadership</strong> to have a positive, sustainable and long-lasting impact on internationalisation at SU and FMHS.</li></ul><strong>Leadership roles are demanding. What keeps you motivated?</strong><br><p>I have always received and been blessed with infinite support from my family. My parents taught me that one can achieve anything one put your mind to. My motivation thus stems from knowing that there are no limits to the imagination and that with intelligent application of knowledge, and education as a foundation, success in life can undoubtedly be achieved.</p><p>Institutional development and change processes can be gradual and slow-going, so I have learned to celebrate incremental change. I am continually motivated by the outstanding and relentless pace as well as tremendous progress of the Tygerberg International team, despite the demanding regulatory environment in which we operate. It is a privilege to be part of a team genuinely committed and constantly striving to remain responsive to our students' and staff's needs.<br></p><p>FMHS receives international visitors throughout the year. When I observe this high interest in SU and FMHS, I am inspired to continue achieving even better and more efficient ways to support and broaden our internationalisation efforts. </p><p>I am further encouraged by continued and dedicated contributions from FMHS staff and students who are collaboratively and progressively accelerating the progress of the Faculty's internationalisation work. </p><p><strong>What would your message be to the next generation of aspiring female leaders?</strong></p><p>The journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step. Keep moving towards your dreams, and the horizons of future opportunities will always be within your reach. </p><p>Stay the course and never lose motivation, even if your well-made plans must change. Life is an emerging process, and there are infinite pathways to reach our chosen and intended destinations. </p><p>Life and our respective personal and professional journeys provide a multitude of valuable and unique learning opportunities if one is prepared to face challenges. Consequently, we inevitably grow, develop, and refine our skill set by facing testing times. Be comfortable with constant shifts, as it is this trials-by-fire that shape our leadership capabilities.​<br></p><p><strong>​Photographer</strong>: Wilma Stassen<br></p>
"Japan and South Africa: Toward A Genuine Partnership""Japan and South Africa: Toward A Genuine Partnership"Daniel Bugan<p></p><p>South Africa and Japan have the potential to elevate their partnership to another level which will ultimately benefit both countries, says His Excellency Mr Norio Maruyama, Ambassador of Japan to South Africa.</p><p> Maruyama made these remarks during a seminar delivered at the launch of the Stellenbosch University Japan Centre (SUJC) in Stellenbosch recently. The SUJC aims to enhance South Africa-Japan relations by promoting, Japanese Studies at SU and encouraging research and teaching collaboration between SA and Japan in all fields of study through bilateral and multilateral higher education networks. The centre will also host educational, cultural and people-to-people events for the broader community.</p><p> Maruyama's seminar was entitled: “Japan and South Africa: Toward A Genuine Partnership".</p><p> The diplomat, who studied economics at the University of Tokyo, said South Africa and Japan need to consider working on three key elements if they want to graduate from a mere partnership to a genuine partnership. These are: common values and goals, mutually vital interests and geopolitical elements.</p><p><strong>Common values and goals</strong></p><p><strong></strong>Maruyama said South Africa and Japan have a lot in common to deliberate on as partners in the international arena, such as climate change and global governance, but feels there are more pressing matters that need their attention.<br></p><p> “We need to focus on matters such as disaster relief and the counter-piracy issue which is quite important if we want to see our nations thrive in the ocean economy. The development of Africa is also important and<strong> </strong>is something SA and Japan are already working on through TICAD (Tokyo International Conference on African Development). But we can do more," he said.</p><p> TICAD is an open multilateral conference framework, co-organised by Japan, the United Nations Development Programme, the World Bank and the African Union Commission, covering essential fields for the sustainable and comprehensive development of African countries with African ownership as its cornerstone.  Since the seventh TICAD gathering was held in 2019, 23 000 people were trained in healthcare, 46 000 in justice, police and security and six million children received quality education.</p><p> <strong>Mutually vital interests</strong></p><p>The ambassador said to take a further step toward a genuine partnership between SA and Japan, the two countries have to work on areas of vital interest that can be of mutual benefit.</p><p> In terms of South Africa's overall trade “we are importing a lot (7% of mostly materials and critical minerals) from South Africa, but exporting only 3% (mostly of automotive related products) to South Africa.</p><p> “Let's also look at critical minerals. South Africa is a leading producer of palladium, contributing 32% of the global production. Palladium is a critical mineral which is indispensable as 60% of Japan's domestic demand for palladium is for automotive exhaust gas purification catalysts. Platinum groups such as palladium are also used to improve the performance of water electrolysis equipment and hydrogen storage materials necessary to utilise hydrogen energy. "</p><p> Regarding infrastructure, Maruyama expressed Japan's desire to collaborate with South Africa on the construction of a high speed train between Durban and Johannesburg. He alluded to the Mumbai- Ahmedabad high speed rail project in India as a successful collaboration which they embarked on in2018. He added that Japan is also willing to collaborate with SA on the development of the Port of Durban and mentioned as example Japan's support of the Mombasa (Kenya) port development project of which the second phase started in 2015.</p><p> <strong>Geopolitical elements</strong></p><p> Maruyama said the two countries need to work together to promote and establish the existing rule of law of a free and open Indo-Pacific.</p><p> “The Indo-Pacific region is facing various challenges such as piracy, terrorism, natural disasters and attempts to change the status quo. Under such circumstances, Japan aims to promote peace, stability and prosperity across the region to make the Indo-Pacific free and open through ensuring rules-based international order, including the rule of law, freedom of navigation and overflight, peaceful settlement of disputes, and promotion of free trade. Japan will cooperate with any country that supports this idea."</p><p>​<br></p>
Stellenbosch University Japan Centre launched University Japan Centre launchedCorporate Communication and Marketing | Korporatiewe Kommunikasie en Bemarking (Daniel Bugan)<p>​Stellenbosch University (SU)  officially launched the Stellenbosch University Japan Centre (SUJC), envisioned to be a leading hub for academic research and cultural exchange between South Africa and Japan.<br></p><p>The SUJC is the culmination of a long-standing collaboration between SU and Japan in research partnership activities that span more than 20 years. Discussions to establish the SUJC began in 2020 and in May 2022 a framework for establishing the Centre was approved by both the SU Rectorate and the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Tokyo.</p><p>The purpose of the SUJC is to contribute to enhancing South Africa-Japan relations by:</p><ul><li>Promoting Japanese Studies at SU;<br></li><li>Encouraging research and teaching collaboration between SA and Japan in all fields of study through bilateral and multilateral higher education networks at institutional and national levels;</li><li>Hosting educational, cultural, and people-to-people events for the broader community; and </li><li>Collaborating with similar centres in Africa and internationally.</li></ul><p>The SUJC will also engage with the Japanese public and private sectors in South Africa to support bilateral and multilateral academic activities between South Africa and Japan.</p><p>Speaking at the launch event which took place on 11 August, Prof Wim de Villiers, SU Rector and Vice-Chancellor, said the University is looking forward to engaging with Japanese stakeholders in South Africa and also to strengthen ties with external and continental stakeholders. “The Centre will add value to a greater understanding, deeper collaboration, and quality long-term partnerships between our peoples."</p><p>“A robust research collaboration between SU and Japanese universities in mathematical sciences, chemistry, biology, polymer science, engineering, and the broader social sciences already exists. So, we really want to see bilateral relations in these and other disciplines growing and flourishing."</p><p>De Villiers added: “This partnership with Japan will also help to realise South Africa's technical and vocational education goals. We are struggling with a skills deficit, in addition to a lack of employment opportunities, and we must learn actively and relentlessly to teach new skills for the world that awaits us all."</p><p>Norio Maruyama, Japan's ambassador in South Africa, said he is looking forward to the Centre facilitating collaboration in a wide range of areas, especially in science and technology.</p><p>“South Africa and Japan have a mutual interest to cooperate in the field of science and technology and to seek business opportunities. I am certain that the Centre will provide an excellent platform to exploit these opportunities." </p><p>He said the location of the SUJC in the Western Cape is of great significance.</p><p>“The Western Cape is one of South Africa's most culturally diverse provinces and the presence of excellent wineries and winemakers here is also very important. A lot of Japanese winemakers can benefit from the skills development expertise provided by Stellenbosch University."</p><p>Prof Scarlett Cornelissen of the Department of Political Science serves as the director of the SUJC. She will provide strategic direction and oversight along with co-director Sarah van der Westhuizen.</p><p>Cornelissen, who has a strong link with Japan as a long-time scholar of its culture, language, and relationship with Africa, explained how the Centre came about: “We saw these hubs of activity at SU that were all Japan-related – people doing joint research projects with partners in Japan, students going to Japanese universities on exchange programmes and Japanese students coming to enrol in courses here. We realised that it made sense to bring all these elements together under one umbrella and that was how the SUJC came to be. </p><p>“But it is about more than that: it is also about introducing Japan and Japanese culture to a South African audience," she said.</p><p>Prof Hester Klopper, Deputy Vice Chancellor: Strategy, Global and Corporate Affairs, says they are excited for the work that will come from the Centre because it supports much of what the University envisions for its future.<br></p><p>“Although we are rooted in Africa, Stellenbosch University's reach is global. For us, internationalisation has therefore, especially over the past four years, become a strategic priority. This means attracting the best students from across the world, doing research that makes a global impact, and building partnerships and networks across the world," she said.<br></p><p><br><strong><em>More about </em></strong><strong><em>the SUJC</em></strong></p><p><em>The </em><em>SUJC</em><em> is situated in the </em><em>Centre for Global Engagement, SU International, in the Krotoa building. It is hosted within SU International to ensure the institutional reach of the Centre, broad support for academic and cultural activities through the infrastructure available at SU International, and the building of strong partnerships with Japanese higher education institutions in all fields of study.</em><br><em> </em><br><em>The Centre is active in the following four areas:</em></p><p><strong><em>Research</em></strong><br><em> This includes promoting the Japan-South Africa Science and Technology Cooperation Agreement as well as joint research calls; and leveraging binational and international forums and networks to help facilitate collaborative research.</em></p><p><strong><em>Teaching</em></strong><em> </em><br><em>This includes facilitating academic programmes in Japanese Studies; short courses on the Japanese economy, history, and society; as well as Japanese language studies. P</em><em>rogrammes are hosted through events presented by the Centre, as well as related academic departments. </em></p><p><strong><em>Staff and student mobility </em></strong></p><p><em>This involves facilitating bilateral exchanges, student and staff mobility programmes; and partnerships with higher education institutions in Japan. SUJC also disseminates information about Japanese government scholarships and teaching and training opportunities in Japan.</em></p><p><strong><em>Engagement</em></strong><br><em> This involves disseminating knowledge about Japan and Japan-South Africa relations; hosting public lectures, seminars, and symposia; as well as academic and cultural networking events.</em><br><em> </em><br><em><strong>Visit</strong></em><em>: </em><a href="/japancentre"><em></em></a><em>  </em><br><em><strong>Email</strong></em><em>:</em></p><p> </p><p>​<br></p>
Meneshia Koopman-"There is no limit to what a woman can accomplish" Koopman-"There is no limit to what a woman can accomplish"Birgit Ottermann/ Photo: Stefan Els<p>“There is no limit to what a woman can accomplish. Life is not about competing with men; it needs to be a collaboration between men and women – we all have equal playing fields. I believe a woman can become anything she wants if she focuses her energy on the goal."<br></p><p>This is the Women's month message of Meneshia Koopman, an administrator responsible for Reception and Client Services at the Stellenbosch University International (SUI) Services Centre. “A woman can become anything she wants if she focuses her energy on the goal."</p><p>Koopman, who has been working at SUI since 2014, believes the university is already getting a lot right when it comes to achieving gender equality in the workplace. </p><p>The diversity and improvements that can be seen are women appointed equally on every level and position up to senior levels and professors," says Koopman. “I love that there are so many powerful women, like Prof Hester Klopper and Prof Thuli Madonsela, in my workplace – it's very inspiring."</p><p>Working in Reception and Client Services makes Koopman often the first port of call for new international students.</p><p>“My responsibilities include receiving and greeting all clients, students, and delegations. What I enjoy most about my job is my interaction with the students - helping them to feel at ease with a warm reception and assisting with their needs. I see myself as a major advantage in my workplace, being an enthusiastic and charismatic woman who can positively affect open communication and help to encourage others."</p><p>As within any job, Koopman also experiences challenges such as difficult clients, juggling incoming calls and queries, and deciding on the best course of action to take – this often includes on-the-spot decisions on who to direct or escalate a difficult call to, when necessary.</p><p>Koopman singles out her manager Carmien Snyman as a wonderful mentor in her workplace. “I'm still learning so much from her, from finance to my daily tasks. She is there not only for work but also shows a lot of interest in my away-from-work environment. She always checks up and encourages me in everything I do.<br></p><p><br></p>
#WomenofSU: Samantha Walbrugh-Parsadh – “Create opportunities where others see obstacles” Samantha Walbrugh-Parsadh – “Create opportunities where others see obstacles”Corporate Communication & Marketing / Korporatiewe Kommunikasie & Bemarking<p>​In an increasingly connected world, tertiary institutions are prioritising internationalisation to enhance their profile and reputation, and Stellenbosch University (SU) is no exception. As head of International Affairs at Stellenbosch Business School, Samantha Walbrugh-Parsadh uses her extensive skills to grow both the Business School's international student body and strategic international partnerships.<strong>  </strong></p><p>As part of SU's Women's Month celebrations, Samantha tells us more about her role and the leadership qualities it requires.</p><p><strong>Tell us more about your role at Stellenbosch University.</strong></p><p style="text-align:justify;">The main purpose of my position is to provide strategic direction to Stellenbosch Business School's internationalisation initiatives. This includes overseeing strategies for maintaining and growing our international student body and international partnerships that are well aligned with our academic project, facilitating the integration of internationalisation with our academic, administrative and support functions, ensuring alignment with the Business School's strategic objectives, and promoting understanding of internationalisation at all levels of the School.<br></p><p><strong>What do you enjoy most about this role?</strong></p><p style="text-align:justify;">I enjoy working with my amazing team to deliver on our mandate, and the support and enthusiasm for internationalisation in the Stellenbosch Business School community, in our faculty and at institutional level. I also appreciate the people I meet from across the globe, the friendships formed over the years, experiencing new cultures and seeing new places. In addition, I am privileged to co-create international opportunities for our students, faculty and professional support staff and their counterparts at other business schools, thereby enhancing opportunities for growth and development in the international higher education sector.   </p><p><strong>What do you think are the key leadership qualities required to fulfil your role?</strong></p><p style="text-align:justify;">For me, the key leadership qualities are empathy, humility, passion, self-awareness, honesty, respect, creativity, resilience, flexibility, communication, accountability, integrity, trust and vision.<br></p><p><strong>Leadership roles are demanding. What keeps you motivated?</strong></p><p style="text-align:justify;">I am passionate about international higher education because it changed my own life, so I want to create similar opportunities for others. I had the opportunity to learn a third language in high school and then spent a year in Germany as an exchange student after matric. The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) funded my postgraduate studies. I also represented SU as an Abe Bailey fellow in Britain and spent a year of my master's studies at the University of Salzburg in Austria as a recipient of a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholarship.    </p><p style="text-align:justify;">​​The best motivation for me is to hear local and international students, faculty members and professional administrative support staff speak about their learning experiences during their international benchmarking visits, conferences and other engagements. Another motivation is to see the penny drop as they realise that Stellenbosch Business School and the broader University truly offer world-class education as well as relevant and impactful research. That's when they really understand the importance of internationalisation.   </p><p><strong>What would your message be to the next generation of aspiring female leaders?</strong></p><p style="text-align:justify;">Know your value, trust your heart and stay true to yourself. Do not be afraid to make mistakes – learn from them and move forward. Identify a mentor early in your career. Embrace the opportunities available to you, even though they may not have been part of your original plan. Ask for help – it is not a sign of weakness, but of strength. Encourage others and celebrate their victories with them. Say thank you to your team and others you work with. Create opportunities where others see obstacles. Be kind to yourself and take a break when you need it. Leadership is a journey; it is not always easy, but it is worth it. Persevere.<br></p><p>​<br></p>
Norma Derby -"Let’s continue cheering for each other" Derby -"Let’s continue cheering for each other"Birgit Ottermann/ Photo: Stefan Els<p>​<strong>​#WomenofSUI​</strong><br></p><p>“It is 27 years since Women's Day was first celebrated in South Africa to commemorate the 1956 march of approximately 20 000 women to the Union Buildings in Pretoria in protest of the pass law, which required black South Africans to carry a passbook ('<em>dompas</em>'). I believe each year's celebration contributes to the overall objectives of celebrating this courageous act while raising awareness of the continued need for equal rights for women in our country," says Norma Derby, Programme Manager: Africa Partnership Development at Stellenbosch University International (SUI).</p><p> “South Africa is by its very nature a patriarchally driven society, which is also reflected at Stellenbosch University (SU). While the university is consciously striving for gender balance, as can be seen in the year-on-year-increase in the percentage of females employed, there should be greater movement," she says.</p><p> Derby has been working for nearly six years in SUI's Centre for Collaboration in Africa (CCA), a centre that aims to create an enabling environment for the campus community to collaborate with other universities and research institutions across the African continent and globally in order to enhance SU's internationalisation portfolio. Her main responsibilities are managing partnerships, student and staff mobility on the African continent, and coordinating or assisting with SU events to have an African focus.</p><p> “The management at SU International is very aware and deliberate in making women feel heard and supported," Derby notes. “This applies to the appointment of staff, filling positions and opening up opportunities to other racial groups as well, especially women filling positions that demand respect based on competency and capacity as well as commitment."</p><p> Reflecting on this year's theme for Women's Day 'Generation Equality: Realising Women's Rights for an Equal Future', Derby says that she strives to support and uplift her female colleagues in her everyday interactions. “I give positive criticism when required and congratulate and celebrate female colleagues, especially the next generation professional women. It's important for me that my fellow female colleagues are self-assured, knowledgeable and always feel supported," she says.</p><p> Asked if she has had any inspiring mentors in her life, she mentions the name of Merle Hodges, the former director of the Cape Peninsula University of Technology's (CPUT) International Office and the first female president of the International Education Association of South Africa (IEASA) of which SUI is a member.</p><p> “Sadly, my mentor, Merle Hodges, passed away a couple of days ago. She became my mentor in 2017 when I realised I needed to enhance my knowledge of internationalisation in the higher education field. During past annual IEASA conferences, I saw Merle in action, always willing to share her wealth of knowledge on internationalisation through inspirational and dynamic presentations. She was just so open and welcoming to share her knowledge and, through her example, I want to be a role model for the next generation of females too."</p><p> When it comes to strong role models on the SU campus, Derby singles out Prof Hester Klopper. “She serves as a stern, professional but deeply committed woman who leads by example and also serves as an exemplary leader and role model who cuts across racial divides and gender differentiation."</p><p>For Women's Day this year, Derby has the following words of wisdom: “Maya Angelo wrote: 'We can be. Be and be better. For they existed'. Young people, whilst remaining critical, should remember that older generations were not perfect. Let's respect their efforts and contribution to equality for all. To the men, remember that gender equality in the workplace must be acknowledged, and respected and is a team effort. To women, let's remember the quote which is synonymous with Women's Day: '<em>wathint' abafazi, wathint' imbokodo</em>' (You strike a woman, you strike a rock). Let's remain strong, continue cheering for each other, and make strides for the next generation of women to reap the benefits of equality.  <br></p><p>​<br></p>
Mia Andersen- "Remember your worth and how far you’ve come" Andersen- "Remember your worth and how far you’ve come"Birgit Ottermann/ Photo by Stefan Els<p>​<strong>​​​As part of commemorating women's month, we will profile some of the #WomenofSUI. This week we had a chance to chat with Mia Andersen.</strong></p><p> Mia Andersen started out her career at Stellenbosch University International (SUI) as an intern in 2017 before being appointed in 2019 as the Administrator for Short Programmes, Summer Schools, and Affiliates. In 2020, she was appointed as Coordinator in the Unit for International Credentialing within SUI's Africa Centre for Scholarship.</p><p>She loves working with and learning from experts and prominent leaders. “I coordinate the external quality assurance processes related to the Independent Examinations Board's International Secondary Certificate (IEB-ISC), a new international school-leaving certificate," Andersen explains. “This includes establishing and coordinating three high-level expert committees who oversee the processes as well as appointing, training and coordinating external moderators to moderate the final examination papers."</p><p>When it comes to this year's Women's Day theme 'Generation Equality: Realising Women's Rights for an Equal Future', Andersen says a quote from the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg comes to mind: 'Women belong in all places where decisions are being made. It shouldn't be that women are the exception.' </p><p>“Working within SUI and the broader SU, I relate to this quote as I believe only when women are equally represented where 'decisions are being made' can we truly start discussing generation equality and strive for an equal future for all. SU has laid a good foundation in the form of policies and processes. I do, however, think there is much more to be done and that a lot of their words still need to be put into action."</p><p>Looking at promoting equality within her immediate environment, Andersen says her work with the IEB-ISC is helping to strengthen the right to equal education for all by quality assuring a qualification that is an affordable, African-centered alternative school-leaving certificate.</p><p>She acknowledges the mentorship of two exceptional line managers in her time at SUI. “I have been very fortunate. Both are very good leaders, providing guidance and support where necessary without micromanaging. I also admire their ability to always come up with a plan B, and to regard mistakes as a plan A that didn't work out, rather than failure. Both of them inspire me to be a leader in my own space."</p><p>Andersen's message to other women this Women's Month is: “It is important to remember your worth, how far you have come and what you are capable of." <br></p><p>​<br></p>
Celebrating 20 years of the SU summer school 20 years of the SU summer school SU International<p>​​​What started out two decades ago as an opportunity for mostly American students to gain exposure to South Africa through an academic programme for three to four weeks has grown into a flagship institution on the annual calendar of Stellenbosch University (SU) International. Today, the SU summer school (for those in the northern hemisphere; 'winter school' for their peers in the south) comprises 17 different courses and caters to a much wider audience.<br></p><p>The 33 International students who formed part of this year's June/July cohort <a href="">celebrated the School's achievement</a> formally at an event hosted by SU International in Stellenbosch on 14 July 2022. This special gathering was attended by international students from the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, and 5 SU student assistants. As well as some of the course lectures. <br></p><p>The summer/winter school is hosted in June and July each year, and the 2022 edition is in full swing. The course offering covers the fields of philosophy, engineering, botany, political science, economics, literature, art and media, history, HIV/Aids, international relations, Chinese studies, multilingualism, linguistics, marketing, global service learning, public health, and doing business in Southern Africa. </p><p>Apart from offering international students a sense and taste of our town, region and country, as well as top-quality lectures, the schoool's also provides our own SU students with a transformative experience through networking with the international guests. As such, it is well aligned with the institutional objective of comprehensive internationalisation, which includes internationalisation at home.</p><p>“We started back in 2001 with one course offering," says Werner de Wit, manager of Short Term Mobility at SU International. “Over the years, the school has grown, with delegates even coming from countries such as China, Singapore and Egypt. In fact, in 2019, just before Covid-19 hit, we had over 45 nationalities represented across our 17 courses. </p><p>“We try to renew the courses every year to keep up with new developments," Werner adds. “We change as times change, so the programme really develops along with society and the world to ensure that our academic offering remains cutting-edge."  </p><p>In keeping with SU's holistic approach to teaching and learning, the well-balanced academic programme of the summer school combines theory and practice in an organic manner. Moreover, the school includes a social programme designed to support the academic programme and introduce our international guests to the cultural diversity of Stellenbosch and the Western Cape. </p><p>For photos of the celebration, click <a href="" style="text-decoration:underline;">here.</a><br></p><p>For more on the school, visit <a href=""></a>.</p><p><br></p><p>​ </p><p><br></p>
SU student takes top spot in Chinese proficiency competition student takes top spot in Chinese proficiency competition by Prof Huang Binlan, Chinese co-director of CISU<p>​The<a href="/english/confucius-institute"> Confucius Institute at Stellenbosch University (CISU)</a> is exceptionally proud of Stellenbosch University (SU) student Iola Meyer (<em>pictured alongside</em>), who recently scooped first place in the 21<sup>st</sup> Chinese Bridge proficiency competition for university students in South Africa. This is the first time in five years that SU achieves this honour.<br></p><p>The Chinese Bridge (or “Hanyu Qiao") is an annual worldwide competition for primary and secondary-school learners as well as university students – all non-mother-tongue speakers of Chinese – to showcase their Chinese proficiency. The 2022 edition for South African students was held online on Thursday 23 June. <br></p><p>Livestreamed by the Chinese embassy in South Africa from the University of Johannesburg (UJ), the event attracted some distinguished guests. These included His Excellency Chen Xiaodong (Chinese ambassador to South Africa), Prof Tshilidzi Marwala (UJ Vice-Chancellor), Prof Huang Wei (president of the Asia Pacific Engineering Federation), Mr Tang Zhongdong (Chinese consul-general in Johannesburg), Mr Li Xudong (education counsellor, Chinese embassy) and Mr Chen Kan (deputy general manager of Huawei South Africa). (<em>See screenshot below of guests and contestants at the event.</em>)</p><p><img src="/english/PublishingImages/Lists/dualnews/My%20Items%20View/webinar.jpg" alt="webinar.jpg" style="margin:5px;width:508px;" /><br><br></p><p>​<br></p>
SU holds its own in international rankings holds its own in international rankingsCorporate Communication & Marketing / Korporatiewe Kommunikasie & Bemarking [Alec Basson]<p>​Stellenbosch University (SU) continues to hold its own in a competitive global higher education landscape. Having improved its position on the latest <a href=""><strong class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-5-0">QS (Quacquarelli Symonds) World University Rankings</strong></a>, it continues to be regarded as one of the top 500 tertiary institutions in the world. </p><p>In the <a href=""><strong class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-5-0">2023 version</strong></a> released recently, SU is ranked at number 454, compared to last year when it was placed at 482. In terms of the QS rankings, SU occupies the fourth position in South Africa (and in Africa).<br></p><p>Regarded as one of the three top university ranking systems globally, the QS World University Rankings 2023 features over 1 400 universities – the biggest QS university ranking yet.</p><p>These institutions were assessed across the following six categories (or indicators) to effectively capture university performance: academic reputation (teaching and research quality); employer reputation (preparing students for successful careers/providing the most competent, innovative, and effective graduates); faculty-to-student ratio (providing students with meaningful access to lecturers and tutors); citations per faculty (number of academic citations in papers produced by a university in a five-year period); and international student ratio & international faculty ratio (the ability to attract quality students and staff from across the world).</p><p>Commenting on SU's latest achievement, Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Strategy, Global and Corporate Affairs Prof Hester Klopper said that although the University does not officially take part in the QS Rankings, it is good to hear that SU improved on its position. </p><p>“Our consistent performance on various international rankings is testimony to the institution's vision of being 'Africa's leading research-intensive university, globally recognised as excellent, inclusive and innovative, where we advance knowledge in service of society'. Considering that universities on the African continent's social, economic, and political contexts differ vastly from that of universities in high-income countries, SU's continued presence on established rankings is an achievement of note," she said. </p><p>In April 2022, SU was also ranked among the top 2 000 higher education institutions in the world by the Center for World University Rankings.</p><p>Over the last few years, SU has been consistently ranked among the best tertiary institutions in the world on various global university rankings including the QS World University Rankings, the Times Higher Education World University Rankings, and the Times Higher Education Emerging Economies University Rankings.<br></p><p>​<br></p>
First cohort of Future17 initiative complete course cohort of Future17 initiative complete course Corporate Communication and Marketing/Korporatiewe Kommunikasie en Bemarking - Sandra Mulder<p>A diverse group of 130 international students from Brazil, China, the United Kingdom and South Africa has made history by completing the <a href="/english/SUInternational/future17-sustainable-development-goals-programme">Future17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Challenge short course</a> – a first of its kind for Stellenbosch University (SU).<br></p><p>This course was hosted by the SDG/2063 Impact Hub at Stellenbosch University International (SUI). The Impact Hub aims to promote the United Nations' 2030 Agenda and its sustainable development goals (SDGs), alongside the African Union's Agenda 2063 for a prosperous Africa within the context of international higher education. <br></p><p>The 38 SU students who formed part of the cohort celebrated their achievement informally at an event hosted by SUI in Stellenbosch on 9 June. This special gathering of SU students preceded the official global celebration on 13 June. The other participants were from the <a href="">University of Exeter</a><span lang="EN-US" style="text-decoration:underline;"> (UK)</span>, the <a href="">Chinese University of Hong Kong</a> and the <a href="">University of São Paulo</a> (Brazil). </p><p>The SU group, comprising final year undergraduate as well as postgraduate students, were praised for the innovation, commitment, professionalism and outstanding ambassadorship for SU that they displayed since the launch of the course in March. <br></p><p>The prestigious three-month Future17 SDG Challenge Course is unique because it is driven by a consortium of universities from four countries, assisted by global challenge partners. The aim is to educate and equip students with the knowledge and skills to find innovative ways to turn sustainable development goals into reality, said Corina du Toit, Programme Manager: SDG/2063 Impact Hub, and academic lead for the course.<br></p><p>Among the guests at the SUI celebration was Dr Nico Elema, Director of the <a href="/english/SUInternational/Pages/Centre-for-collaboration-in-Africa.aspx">Centre for Collaboration in Africa</a> at <a href="/english/SUInternational/Pages/default.aspx">SUI</a>. He shared his reflections on the programme and congratulated the students and mentors for overcoming the challenges of the new course, as well as streamlining the processes for the next cohorts. “You have walked the journey with us, we figured out things, and we all learnt many lessons. So, thank you for contributing positively and being ambassadors for the University. You made us proud."<img src="/english/PublishingImages/Lists/dualnews/My%20Items%20View/Future17SDG_2.jpg" alt="Future17SDG_2.jpg" class="ms-rtePosition-2" style="margin:5px;width:500px;height:333px;" /> </p><p>Commenting on the effectiveness of the programme, Dr Munya Saruchera, senior lecturer and interim Director of SU's <a href="">Africa Centre for HIV and AIDS Management</a> in the World of Work, added: “I think the coming together of different universities reflected the microcosm level of how different countries can work together on this global agenda (SDGs). It was interesting how the mentors and students from different cultures and environments engaged effectively." </p><p><strong>Educate and equip</strong></p><p>These SDGs are at the heart of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development – the blueprint for partnerships, peace and prosperity for people and the planet – adopted by all United Nations (UN) member states. (For more information, visit the <a href="">UN's Agenda 2030 and the SDGs</a>.)</p><p>Aligned with the 2030 Agenda, the Future17 Course focuses on the UN's SDGs, adopted by 195 UN member nations in 2015, as a framework to help find solutions for the global and interdisciplinary challenges we face while building participants' key employability, critical thinking, hybrid and remote working, and presentation skills. Participants used collaborative and innovative ways to approach challenges, working with the partner universities and mentors assigned by the different institutions.<br></p><p>The SDG challenge partners comprise organisations like NGOs, institutions and companies that conceptualised challenges for the course. Challenges included creating a digital strategy to promote the SDGs to university students, doing market research for urban farms, or recycling soap from hotel chains to create jobs for communities, said Du Toit. <br></p><p>She praised the students for their performance with the assignments. “I sat in on many presentations and was very impressed by the professional standard and quality of work put forward by your groups. Considering that this was a pilot project, we were unsure what to expect – and you certainly helped set the bar very high for the next offerings." <br></p><p>At the SUI celebration event, students had the opportunity to share their course experience with the guests. Encapsulating all the students' experiences, <strong>Sharon Sambaza</strong> (LLM) said: “The Future17 short course was nothing short of a roller coaster, and it was quite an enjoyable ride! I chose to enrol in the course because of my keen interest in issues relating to sustainable development and engaging in a learning experience with students in various parts of the world. My experience during the course was both challenging and rewarding. We learned interdisciplinary concepts crucial in finding innovative solutions to problem-solving, such as design thinking and prototyping."</p><p><strong>Jack Potter </strong>expressed his gratitude for being exposed to the course: “By doing this course, I was exposed to tasks and engagements that I otherwise would not have been. I could learn from and work with people from around the globe who all share a like-minded passion for sustainable development. In the coming years, I will apply this newly gained knowledge practically in conserving wilderness areas and protecting wildlife." </p><p> </p><ul><li><a href="">Applications</a> for the next round of the Future17 short course can be submitted until <strong>25 July 2022</strong>. For more information about the course, click <a href="/english/SUInternational/future17-sustainable-development-goals-programme">here</a>.</li></ul><p> </p><p><strong>Photographer: </strong>Stefan Els<br></p><p> </p><p>​<br></p>