Tuesday, 26 November 2019

Excellent teachers recognised

Videos, peer education and online platforms are just some of the innovative tools the excellent teachers recently honoured by the Faculty of Health and Wellness Sciences use in their classrooms.

A number of outstanding teachers were honoured during the Faculty’s annual Teaching Excellence Awards.

Five departmental winners were recognised while Ryan Matthews from the Department of Emergency Medical Sciences (EMS) scooped the overall Faculty Teaching Excellence Award.

The five departmental winners are: Dr Lisa Graham, (Biomedical Sciences) Dr Kathleen Grant (Biomedical Sciences), Nkosikho Sogwagwa (Biomedical Sciences), Llizane McDonald (EMS) and Valdiela Daries (Medical Imaging and Therapeutic Sciences).

This year the Faculty also introduced a number of new categories.

The winners in these categories are:

  • Outstanding Workplace Learning Engagement Initiative: John Meyer (EMS)
  • Service Learning – Saaiga Ismail (MITS)
  • Language initiatives – Dr Lisa Graham (Biomedical Sciences).
  • Outstanding Research Awardees: Prof Peter Clarke-Farr (Ophthalmic Sciences), Dr Hilda Vember (Nursing) and Dr Glenda Davison (Biomedical Sciences)
  • Outstanding Teaching with Technology initiative: Dr Lisa Graham (Biomedical Sciences).
  • Outstanding First-Year experience and Orientation Initiative: Wendy Solomon Biomedical Sciences)
  • Outstanding Curriculum Development: Marlene Bezuidenhout (Dental Sciences)

Acting Dean of the Faculty, Prof Penelope Engel-Hills, said celebrating success in the workplace was important and thanked the winners for going the extra mile.

The incoming 2019/2020 Student Representative Council (SRC) has been encouraged to listen to the voices of students.

Thursday, 07 November 2019

Focus on First Year Experience

The First Year Experience (FYE) was the focus of a recent symposium hosted at Saretec by the Fundani Centre for Higher Education Development (CHED).

The event delved into a number of interesting topics around the FYE and attendees included retention officers and mentors from various campuses as well as staff members.

Dr Annsilla Nyar, Director of the South African National Resource Centre for the First-Year Experience and Students in Transition, was one of three keynote speakers.Her address was titled: Shifting our thinking about the First-Year Experience and issues of student retention and success: some important questions.

She said the field of FYE has grown significantly in a matter of years but was “still a work in progress”.

Nyar commended CPUT for being one of the institutions that have been at the forefront in keeping the FYE alive.

Dr Soraya Motsabi, FYE Coordinator at the University of Johannesburg was the second keynote speaker and focused her address on preparing students for the Fourth Industrial Revolution through FYE.

The third keynote speaker was Dr Subethra Pather, teaching and learning specialist in the office of the Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Academic at the University of the Western Cape. Her address was titled: I heard it through the Grapevine: First Year Student Transition.

Dr Nosisana Mkonto, institutional coordinator for the FYE at CPUT, thanked staff members, retention officer, mentors, the various units and “champions” in the faculties who are all contributing to the FYE at CPUT.

Breast cancer is the most prevalent cancer among women in South Africa and the Medical Imaging and Therapeutic Sciences Department recently arranged a range of activities to raise awareness of the disease. 

Integrity is embedded in the graduate attributes of the National Diploma in Events Management and forms the basis of good business practice among youth entering the tourism sector.

This is according to Event Management senior lecturer, Esti Venske, who spearheaded the Integrity Workshop with Crystal Kasselman from Centeq Events, and Celebrity Psychologist and Integrity Leadership Expert, Charissa Bloomberg.

Bloomberg and Kasselman officially launched the Integrity Lapse Event endorsed by Stellenbosch University’s Prof Thuli Madonsela in November 2018.

Third-year students recently participated in a Business Events Integrity Day at the Cape Town Hotel School. They were proud to become the first cohort of youth in South Africa to participate in the national Integrity Forum as part of their industry engagement education, said Venske. 

“Integrity is doing the right thing all the time, even if no one else is watching or there is no prospect of a reward. In other words, integrity is doing what you believe to be right, at all costs,” Bloomberg told the students during the workshop.

“People with integrity are guided by a set of core principles that empower them to behave consistently to high standards.”

The accredited Emotional Intelligence facilitator added that the core values of integrity are compassion, dependability, generosity, honesty, kindness and loyalty. People living with integrity follow moral and ethical ways in everything they do as well as perform actions that do not demean themselves or others.

She defined Business Practice Integrity as how an organisation goes about its business. This has to do with whether it treat its employees with dignity and respect, does it treat its customers fairly or whether it pays its suppliers on time?

“A reputation takes years to build, but can be lost overnight following an ethical lapse; yet integrity is not often practiced,” observed the media activist.  

The students discussed several topics pertinent to integrity which included the following:

Why is integrity important in our industry?

Examples where you did or didn’t act with integrity and how did it make you feel?

How to spread integrity?

How do we become integrity role models?

How to make integrity current?

How do we learn to forgive ourselves after integrity lapse?

Bloomberg wants to challenge other CPUT departments to host similar workshops in the near future.

Tuesday, 15 October 2019

Putting Vision First

The Department of Ophthalmic Sciences marked World Sight Day with a range of activities aimed at highlighting the cause.

BTech Public Relations (PR) students have managed to secure a large donation as well as thousands of rands in goods for a local non-profit organisation.

Deidre Porthen, senior lecturer and head of the PR programme, said the students exceeded expectations by raising more than R60 000 and garnering valuable publicity for the Carel Du Toit Centre.

The Parow-based-centre is primarily for children suffering from bilateral hearing loss or who are considered deaf.

As part of their curriculum, the students were tasked with an assignment to secure funds for the centre as well as raise awareness.

Their campaign efforts included a Comedy Market Day where comedians including, Yaseen Baker, Ambrose Uren, and Arlene Petersen availed their services for free.

The students also organised a collection drive for three weeks at Checkers, Canal Walk. During the drive, the students approached shoppers to donate items on the Centre’s wish list of non-perishables and successfully secured over 500 wish list items.

The students’ call for donations managed to reach the Office of the Mayor and they managed to secure a R50 000 donation for the charity.

All the proceeds that were raised will positively impact young learners from the centre who suffer hearing loss.

Student Jill Baaitjies said the experience was “incredibly rewarding”.

“In the beginning, we were focused on marks but eventually it was all about the cause.”