Sport Department celebrates Mandela Day at Khayelitsha

Sport Management students who are doing their Work-Integrated Learning at CPUT’s Department of Student Affairs Sport celebrated Mandela Day by painting the walls at the Philani Centre in Khayelitsha.

The students were later joined by the Centre’s staff and community members in painting the walls.

Head of Sport Department Siyabulela Mkwalo said the Philani Centre and CPUT have a mutual relationship that focuses on the wellbeing and development of the children through the provision of recreational programmes offered by Sport Management students.

“The intention of the partnership is to enhance the learning ability of children, as well as enable every child to grow up healthy in order to fulfil their physical and mental potential,” said Mkwalo.  “This engagement has a potential to increase children’s learning abilities, improve concentration levels, aerobic capacity and teamwork.”

Philani Centre has 13 Educare classes across six different sites which serves a total of 341 children between the ages of three and six years. All the teachers have formal training with qualifications varying from a NQF Level 4 to Diploma in Early Childhood Development.

The Educare Programme is consistent with the overall Philani mission of promoting excellent child health and development knowing that children who play do not only enjoy physical development but also recover faster from illness and malnutrition.

The 16 Sport Management students, who are funded by the Culture, Arts, Tourism, Hospitality and Sport Sector Education and Training Authority, are enrolled by the Sport Department in a one-year internship that started in September 2017.

PAINT LESSONS: Sport Management students working on the walls at the Philani Centre in Khayelitsha.

Life skills through sailing


The Department of Student Affairs (DSA) has introduced a Learn to Sail programme, which equips students with a set of life skills while enjoying sailing.

Students learn skills such as diversity management as everyone on the boat is equal, the importance of teamwork, discipline, commitment, communication, time management and dealing with stressful situations from the programme for free.

“Your needs and desires are secondary to those of the group – as a group you have to navigate the boat to safety regardless of the weather or swell of the dunes,” says Student Development Officer Anette Grobler.

The programme, which is made possible by SA Sailing Western Cape, Western Cape Department of Cultural Affairs, the Sailing Academy, the Royal Cape Yacht club and DSA, started recently at the Royal Cape Yacht club with 18 students from all CPUT campuses.

It will continue until October and will resume in January next year and each programme lasts for five weeks.

Training takes place on Sundays.

“Currently, CPUT is the only university that offers this programme to its students,” adds Grobler.

In order to take part in the programme students must be able to swim. If not, they will still be trained in the art of sailing, but their training will mostly be focussed on the important role a person working on the “bridge” plays.

Later this year, part of this programme will also include a “Learn to Swim” phase.

Students must attend at least four of the five Sunday sessions in order to receive a certificate at the programme’s graduation ceremony.

Students are transported to the yacht club and the bus from Cape Town campus will depart from the Admin Building at 09:30, while on the Bellville campus it will depart at 09:00 from the parking area in front of the New Library building.


Slashing Stereotypes

From a silent disco to exploring the thorny issue of stereotypes, a recent Department of Student Affairs event left more than a few guests questioning their own mind sets.

Themed ‘Surfing the Suffix’ the event held at the Marimba restaurant at the CTICC also saw staff and students celebrate leadership and excellence at CPUT.

Organiser Anette Grobler says her motivation for the event was to allow students to interact and challenge their own pre-conceived ideas around issues of stereotyping.

“Discrimination is one of the social ills in our society and all institutions of learning.  Attempts to deal with discrimination need to be as sophisticated as the problem itself,” she says.

And the event certainly met her expectation, starting with a novel ice-breaker called Secret Sunrise all guests donned music headsets which encouraged them to explore the space around them using dance and to interact with strangers. Some of the unpretentious exchanges saw guests hug a stranger, make a funny face and fly like an eagle.

Student Affairs Head of Department Malinge Gqebe says racism and sexism is often perceived as being “other people’s problems”.

“We sometimes like to look at others and see problems like racism, we do this without introspection and considering our own faults,” he says.

Speaker for the evening Brett Anderson-Terry is a white, Jewish, gay man who works in the film industry. He challenged the audiences perception of him when he revealed that he was also HIV positive. In an emotional 30 minute chat Anderson-Terry asked the guests to confront their own inner demons and live a more inclusive and positive life.

Unpacking student leadership

Former student representative council leaders and academics unpacked their perceptions of the roles and responsibilities of student leadership at university during a Leadership Summit on the Bellville Campus.

The event was initiated by the Vice- Chancellor’s office and organized by the Department of Student Affairs as part of the institution’s Student Leadership Training Academy.

There were two panels that led various discussions on topical issues in student leadership.

One of the panelists was renowned academic, Brian O’Connell, former Vice Chancellor at the University of the Western Cape.

O’Connell explained why universities in Africa have to succeed and why their students are so important. He also challenged the student leaders to ask themselves what value their actions contribute to knowledge production.

Another panelist was CPUT’s Prof Anthony Staak, Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Learning and Teaching.

Staak says student leadership has a critical role to play in the future of the university and the society.

Student leaders should encourage the establishment of a diverse range of student structures and make sure they are functioning appropriately, says Staak.

Students unpack CPUT values

The Department of Student Affairs (DSA) recently hosted a workshop on CPUT’s core values for members of the university’s various Local SRCs and Central SRC at the Bellville Campus.

In line with the event’s theme of Restaurant Talks the students were divided into groups to discuss the seven values enshrined in the university’s Vision and Mission and a staff member facilitated each group.

Groups later reported back on their respective values to a plenary session and entertained questions and comments from the floor.

The values are Ubuntu, mutual respect, equity, innovation, accountability, excellence and efficiency.

Adv Lionel Harper, acting Dean of Students, explained that the purpose of the event was to debate the university’s core values.

Harper added that he has persuaded the university’s executive management to introduce an award to a student or staff member who showed the greatest degree of Ubuntu in various categories of campus life.

Dean of Faculty of Business and Management Sciences, Prof Mzikayise Binza, says the founders of the university intended for CPUT to live forever.

“CPUT was designed with eternity in mind and therefore it ought to be considered as eternal,” said Binza.

The following questions guided the groups’ discussions:

What does this value mean?

Why is it important to CPUT?

How is the SRC going to ensure that all CPUT students equally understand these values?

Head of DSA Malinge Gqeba told the student leaders that their input would be compiled into a report which would be sent to the university’s management as well as a request for a follow-up session.