Transformation, Social Cohesion and Diversity Unit

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CPUT’s Transformation

Transformation is one of the cross- cutting pillar of CPUT’s ‘One Smart’ Vision 2030 Strategy. It is also anchored in ‘oneness’ and ‘smartness’ as key dimensions that support social cohesion, diversity, inclusivity and digital transformation as key signifiers of transformation.

About us

The Transformation, Social Cohesion and Diversity Unit is responsible for mainstreaming the implementation and coordination of transformation issues across the university. Its scope covers staff administration, student engagement and experiences, teaching and learning, curriculum, transformative research & innovation and community engagement. It strives on enhancing safe and inclusive university environment to ensure access, success, redress university environment free from all forms of discrimination, abuse including Gender Based Violence (GBV). Social cohesion, social justice, diversity and inclusivity including GBV are also key signifiers of transformation.

Social Cohesion

The institution aims at forging unity of purpose and degree of social integration and inclusion through its Vision, Mission, Strategic Plan and values in promoting the institutional culture at CPUT.


The concept of diversity encompasses acceptance and respect, the institution therefore embraces diversity and firmly subscribes to the notion of unity in diversity and “ubuntu”. It values what each staff member and student from diverse races, genders, cultures, religions, classes of society and of various ages brings to the university community.


The concept of inclusivity involves including people who might otherwise be excluded or marginalized in terms of race, gender, class, disability, language, culture and other related identities. Inclusivity ensures bringing them together and harnessing diverse staff and students to enhance safe and inclusive environment. Inclusivity/inclusiveness puts the concept and practice of diversity into action by creating an environment of involvement, respect, and connection—where the richness of identities, ideas, backgrounds, and perspectives are harnessed to enhance integrated staff and student centered environment.

Gender Based Violence (GBV)

The institution has always maintained zero tolerance on Gender Based Violence (GBV) and is also committed to maintaining a healthy and safe and inclusive learning, living, social, recreational staff and student centred environment. This includes fostering an atmosphere of healthy attitudes and behaviours towards sexuality, sex and gender roles inclusive of sexism, racism, ableism, homophobia, transphobia and related “isms” phobia. In response to the institutional response on GBV, the Terms of Reference (TORs) for the high level institutional committee on GBV was approved by the Executive Management. An implementation plan is currently being finalized.

What is transformation?

Transformation is about change, it is a continuing process and is meant to create or anticipate the future and it is also a transition from a particular (existing) state to a desired end state. The transformation journey also calls for dislocation from comfort zones and experimenting with new ideas and novel situations. In any situation of change there will be resistance as well as opportunity for exploration and innovation. The White Paper 3 indicates that the higher education system must be transformed to redress past inequalities, to enhance access and to respond to realities and opportunities (White Paper 1997:3-4). The Ministerial Transformation Oversight Committee(TOC) describes transformation as: “… the improvement of the quality of teaching and learning; the elimination of weak administrative systems, especially at historically disadvantaged universities; the elimination of discriminatory practices based on gender, race, class and historical imbalances; the provision of adequate infrastructure so that all universities can adequately meet their fundamental mandates of teaching, learning, research, innovations and community engagement in the context of social cohesion; the expansion and improvement of research throughout the system; the expansion of access to university education to many more students…” (TOC Terms of Reference: 2015: DHET).

Contact details

Ms Nonkosi Tyolwana Director
Department: Institutional Transformation, Social Cohesion and Diversity
Email address: tyolwanan@cput.ac.za
Contact number: 021 959 6931
Ms Valmarie Cornelius
Office Coordinator Institutional Transformation, Social Cohesion and Diversity
Email address: corneliusv@cput.ac.za
Contact number: 021 959 6867