On Saturday, 9 September, the University of Pretoria (UP) hosted yet another virtual #ChooseUP Day, which served as an introduction for several prospective students and their parents/guardians to the University, its staff, campuses, faculties and student services. The event included a visual tour of the campus.
#ChooseUP Day takes place annually around this time of the year to orientate Grade 12 learners who have received conditional admission offers based on their school-leaving results. Having come through over a year of lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic and migrating to mostly virtual events, UP continued to showcase its prowess by offering students and their parents a world-class virtual event.
During the live-stream, Vice-Chancellor and Principal Professor Tawana Kupe; Student Representative Council (SRC) President Thuto Mashile; Prof Carolina Koornhof, Executive Director: Finance and Business Initiatives; Prof Loretta Feris, Vice-Principal: Academic; and faculty deans addressed visitors. The session was moderated by 947 radio personality Alex Caige and UP student Jodell Kirsten Tantij.
In his address, Prof Kupe said that UP develops students into global citizens and leaders who are skilled, innovative, motivated and committed. “Our graduates are critical thinkers and they are imaginative,” he said. “They are also problem-solvers and collaborators – collaboration brings out the best solutions for society. We also train our students to be entrepreneurs and influencers. They are agile, adaptable, accountable and take initiative. These are leadership qualities needed for the fourth industrial revolution.”
Prof Kupe addressing attendees
Prof Kupe added that UP provides robust support to students. “You are not alone on your academic journey. [email protected] ensures that students graduate in the minimum amount of time so that they can go out and contribute to the economy and be a global citizen. [email protected] improves postgraduate pass rates. Our Student Counselling Unit uses technology to provide better support. We facilitate an environment in which our students can thrive. This includes a free online entrepreneurship course that trains our students to go out into the world to become job creators and employers.”
“UP understands that studying at a university for the first time is completely different to being at school,” Prof Feris told the prospective students. “You will need to make choices on your own and be responsible for your own success, and you will need to be disciplined to succeed and balance fun while focusing on your studies. However, UP will make this easy for you with its wide range of support structures to help you succeed. This is how we teach, learn, impact, innovate and live – we call this THE UP WAY. University life is not only about academic success; we want you to be a well-rounded graduate who is able to make a positive contribution to society.”
According to Wallace Isaacs, Deputy Director: Student Recruitment and Enrolment, the Department of Enrolment and Student Administration (DESA) has processed more than 55 000 applications thus far for the 2023 intake. “Most of our programmes have reached capacity and a limited number of programmes are still open for applications,” he said.
During the event, six UP bursaries to the value of R20 000 each and nine faculty bursaries, each valued at R30 000, were up for grabs. Prospective students also had the chance to win five hampers, three Tuks Student Gym vouchers and three Artisan restaurant vouchers.
Bursary winners and prospective students who were provisionally accepted for the 2023 academic year had the following to say about choosing to study at UP.
“My brother studies at UP – that is why I opted to come to the University,” said Michael Muller, who has been conditionally admitted to study actuarial sciences. “There is also the quality of the education at UP. I am looking forward to meeting new people and studying hard.”
“UP is like home to me, and I am looking forward to campus life and the education that the University offers,” said Khethiwe Mnisi, who plans to study town and regional planning.
“I chose UP because it is known worldwide and I am looking forward to equipping myself with the knowledge that it can offer,” said Christopher Mjijwa, who has been conditionally accepted for a BCom degree in Financial Sciences.
SRC President Thuto Mashile advised in-coming students to study hard and stay focused. “The University is structured in a way that reflects society in general,” she added. “At UP, we have about 120 societies, varying from academic ones to sports and religious societies, making it easy for one to find a voice and a home.”
“Choosing UP is the correct decision that you and your family made, and it is the right step in getting your career started,” said Dr Abbey Mathekga: Director: DESA. “I would like to wish you well in your final examinations, and I am looking forward to seeing you at UP in 2023.”
Watch the event here.