Austrian Embassy donates books to UP Department of Library Services

Posted on May 26, 2023

We are delighted to share with you the latest news from the University of Pretoria (UP) Department of Library Services (DLS). The Austrian Embassy has been donating books to the DLS since 2011 and we are pleased to announce that this privilege has been offered once again, after a hiatus since 2020.

As always, the embassy staff requested that the UP Department of Ancient and Modern Languages and Cultures (AMLC) identify the German language books they would like to receive. Professor Stephan Mühr, acting HOD of AMLC, said that AMLC staff focused on the theme of 'entanglement', to reflect how, in our modern globalised world, where migration happens constantly, different cultures co-exist and influence each other. A specific title chosen, was for instance by an author born elsewhere and now living in Austria.

On 3 May 2023, the books were handed over by H.E. Ambassador Romana Köningsbrun from the Austrian Embassy. They were accepted by Professor Mühr and a fellow German lecturer and AMLC colleague, Dr James Meja Ikobwa. The languages librarian, Ms Adrienne Warricker, also was present to accept the donation at the ceremony held in the library. The DLS top executive team, consisting of the Library Director, the deputy directors, as well as other key library staff members, were also in attendance to welcome and thank the ambassador.

We would like to highlight that this handover was unique, as for the first time since these collaborations began, both the ambassador and the library director representing the two entities are women. Library Director Ms Lindiwe Soyizwapi welcomed the ambassador and thanked her for the generous gift, as well as for the relationship that has been built up between the Austrian Embassy in South Africa and the University of Pretoria’s Merensky 2 library over the past couple of years.

After the handover, Ms Viveka Pillai, Library Manager for the Humanities Faculty Library, accompanied the Ambassador on a brief tour of the Merensky 2 library facilities. The academic department and the library are most grateful for this addition to the collection in support of the German language curriculum at the university and look forward to possible collaborative programs in the future.

We extend our heartfelt thanks to the Austrian Embassy for their continued support and contribution to our library collection.

From left to right: Ms Viveka Pillai (Library Manager for the Humanities Faculty Library), Ms Marinda Maritz (Cataloguer for the Humanities), Dr James Meja Ikobwa (German lecturer in the Department of AMLC), Ms Adrienne Warricker (Information Specialist for the Language Departments), H.E. Romana Königsbrun (Austrian Ambassador), Professor Stephan Mühr (German lecturer and acting HOD Department of AMLC) and Ms Marguerite Nel (Assistant Director: Technical Services in the DLS). 

From left to right: Ms Lindiwe Soyizwapi (Director for DLS), Mr Modisa Khosie (Deputy Director: Information Resources, Access & Operations in the DLS), Dr James Meja Ikobwa (German lecturer in the Department of AMLC), Ms Audrey Lenogo, (Acting Deputy Director Academic Services in the DLS), H.E. Romana Königsbrun (Austrian Ambassador), Professor Stephan Mühr (German lecturer and acting HOD, Department of AMLC) and Mr Lazarus Matizirofa (Deputy Director: Scholarly Communications, Digital Services & Systems in the DLS). 

- Author Adrienne Warricker

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