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Graduation: Faculties of Business and Management Sciences Official start: December 12 @ 9:00 am. Duration: 2h 30m

Sunday, 24 November 2019

CPUT welcomes Irish Ambassador

CAMARADERIE: Irish Ambassador in South Africa, Fionnuala Ni Giolla Seanain flanked by Strategy and Internationalisation Director, Prof René Pellissier and Vice-Chancellor, Prof Chris Nhlapo. CAMARADERIE: Irish Ambassador in South Africa, Fionnuala Ni Giolla Seanain flanked by Strategy and Internationalisation Director, Prof René Pellissier and Vice-Chancellor, Prof Chris Nhlapo.

Vice-Chancellor, Prof Chris Nhlapo, Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Teaching and Learning, Prof Rishidaw Balkaran and the Strategic Initiatives and Partnerships (SIP) unit recently hosted the Irish Ambassador to South Africa, Fionnuala Ni Giolla Seanain.

Nhlapo said the visit was part of the outcomes of the South African Technology Network (SATN), which hosted South African-Irish Colloquium that arose out of a study visit by the SATN’s member institutions, to Ireland in January 2019. He said the visit was in response to the need for the higher education sector in South Africa to place greater importance on the international element of higher education and position itself internationally in terms of research within the technology sector.

“We have identified areas where we can work together; We have developed relationships with Irish Universities such as Cork [University College Cork] in research collaborations within the bio-medical engineering, space sciences, robotics, manufacturing, and ICT,” said the vice chancellor. In the meeting with the ambassador, Strategy and Internationalisation Director, Prof René Pellissier said: “We push for the employability of our students. Our research focus is to get them [students] ready for work. Our education aims to make contribution to South Africa’ socio-economic development.” Meanwhile the ambassador said she decided to pay the institution a courtesy visit while she was conducting her work in the City.

Seanain said: “I could not miss the opportunity to visit CPUT while I am in Cape Town because it’s one of the prominent universities of technology in SA.” “We wanted to see what are the existing opportunities in the universities who have many students from the [previously] disadvantaged communities? We wanted to see where we can intervene?” She added that she will continue to engage with CPUT to see where they can help in terms of development.

Pellissier added that the institution’ next move was to exchange students with the Irish institutions to learn from each other. Nhlapo concluded by saying: “The meeting was to cement the good relationship that we have with Ireland. It is an embracing country, in terms of exchange of students, as a VC you can sleep well, knowing that your students are safe."

Written by Aphiwe Boyce