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Monday, 14 February 2011

Promoting Universities of Technology – Dr Sosibo begins serving on the Council for Higher Education

The role of Universities of Technology (UoTs), access and throughput, and the general state of higher education in South Africa – these are just some of the issues that CPUT’s Dr Zilungile Sosibo will be grappling with as she begins her work with the South African Council for Higher Education. (CHE)

Adviser to the Minister: Dr Sosibo aims to raise the profile of Universities of Technology in South Africa.

Responsible for advising Minister of Higher Education and Training, Dr Blade Ndzimande, the CHE recently welcomed its newest members, among them Sosibo, who is the only person from a UoT to serve on the independent body.

The Acting Head of Department: Further Education and Training rates her appointment as one of her biggest achievements so far. She says she’ll be wasting no time in demystifying stereotypes and will be working hard to raise the profile of not just CPUT, but all of South Africa’s UoTs. “There are people who still don’t give UoTs the same respect they give to traditional universities and that needs to change,” says Sosibo.

Sosibo’s involvement in CHE coincides with her research niche area - Assessment and Evaluations. As the CHE is also responsible for quality assurance in higher education and training, she feels she is uniquely placed to serve the body.

Sosibo spent ten years researching and teaching in the USA, paying special attention to Community Colleges (similar to the South Africas’ Further Education and Training Colleges.) She obtained her PhD in Adult Continuing Education from the University of Northern Illinois, after which she taught South African Cinema and Literature and isiZulu at the University of California at Los Angeles. On her return, she worked at the University of the Western Cape for a year before joining the Education Faculty at CPUT in 2006.

Already serving a second term on Umalusi Council, the body that advises Minister of Basic Education, Angie Motshekga, Sosibo says it makes sense for her to serve on both councils as most students come from high schools. “For me, it is important to know what is happening in the Basic and Higher Education and Training portfolios. Right now, I have the best of both worlds.”

By:  Andiswa Dantile

Written by CPUT News

Email: news@cput.ac.za