Welcome to Stellenbosch University

What to expect



​The welcoming period is the start of your journey to academic success. 

This learning journey continues for as long as you study at Stellenbosch University (SU). In the welcoming week​ you start to integrate the various parts of your life at SU, and you will learn that the residences, PSO wards and clusters are value-driven environments characterised by hospitality, friendliness and dignity.

As first-year student, you enter a phase of rapid development. Remember, your social and emotional adjustment to the university experience constitutes an integral part of your learning journey and personal development. In particular, keep the following in mind:

A first-year experiences a period of intense change, during which 'familiar' attitudes, values and behaviour patterns are often adjusted and developed. This also facilitates the development of challenging and inspiring thought patterns. (Research shows that you and your fellow first-years are more susceptible to change during the welcoming period than in any other stage of your university careers.)

Your introduction to social and community structures during the welcoming week is important. These include structures such as clusters, residences, PSO wards, mentor groups, faculties (such as study and tutor groups), sport clubs and societies.

Role models who live by the University's values and achieve success on their learning journeys may be of great value to you. 

As part of the welcoming programme, it is extremely important for you to adhere carefully and timeously to the administrative and academic requirements of your faculty. This will ensure that you are ready for the commencement of the academic part of your learning journey on the very first day of class.

The two most important development phases of a first-year's learning journey are:

  • coping with freedom (when and how to say no); and​
  • negotiating on your own behalf
Start with these in the welcoming week already. Measure everything in the welcoming programme against the following questions, and ask yourself how the various aspects of the welcoming programme fit into the bigger picture.

Ask yourself the following questions on every activity in which you participate during the welcoming week. (Remember, this includes everything, even your own decision sometimes not to participate in activities.)

  • How does this promote my journey to successful studies (learning journey)?
  • Does it introduce me, as a first-year, to positive social relations/groups?
  • Does it contribute to emotional stability and emotional development?
  • Does it help me to join sound listening, living and learning communities, and encourage me to participate both independently and interdependently?
  • Does it create a relaxed, safe and constructive listening, living and learning space, where I can get clarity on the nature, content, choice and form of my learning journey?