New app launched for UP’s libraries


On 20 July, UP’s Library Services announced the launch of a new app designed for UP’s libraries. Elsabe Olivier, Assistant Director of Marketing and Quality Assurance, managed the project. Olivier said, “It is important for the Department of Library Services to give easy access to its sources and other information to users on their smartphones because this is the world our youth is used to.” Olivier said that UP made use of an external company that specialises in creating mobile software designed for libraries. 

Read more: New app launched for UP’s libraries

NSFAS opens applications for 2018


On 1 August, the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) announced that applications for funding in 2018 are open. In a media statement, NSFAS announced that it has partnered with the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA) “to provide easy access for learners to [apply] for funding”. The partnership will allow NSFAS to make use of the 15 NYDA branches nationwide, as well as more than 50 Local Youth Offices (LYO) to accept NSFAS applications for funding. “These local youth offices are situated within local government facilities in all nine provinces”, the statement reads.

Read more: NSFAS opens applications for 2018

Learning Communities seminar


On 19 July the Department of Student Affairs (DSA) hosted a seminar to discuss the concept of learning communities. The seminar was titled “Learning Communities pilot model into institutional effort for attaining student success” and was held in the Plant Sciences auditorium. Learning Communities is a project that wishes to exploit the concept of peer learning as a catalyst for student success.
Director of Student Affairs Dr. Matete Madiba opened up the seminar with a presentation centred on building communities around student success. In the presentation Madiba emphasised a decline in the dropout rate of first year students around the country. She continued to highlight the need for equity amongst students saying that “in order for everyone to be treated equally, they need access to the same resources”. She went on to explain the difference between poverty and impoverishment and made reference to a book she had recently read by Jay Naidoo called Change: Organising Tomorrow, Today. She said that the book guided her in realising that inequality is the main cause of impoverished students in universities.

Read more: Learning Communities seminar

The Greenline represents UP at Annual Green Campuses Conference


Between 28 and 30 July, The Greenline represented UP at the 6th Annual Green Campuses Conference held at the University of the Western Cape (UWC). This year’s theme was “Save Water”. Cameron Green, Chair and Residence Director of The Greenline, presented on behalf of UP, for which he won the “Best Newcomer Award”.

Read more: The Greenline represents UP at Annual Green Campuses Conference

Uncertainty about Serenade


Petition launched regarding venue of event while Serenade gets renamed to UP A Capella

On 27 July, STUKU announced that the annual residence group-singing competition, Serenade, will be renamed UP A Capella.

The name change comes after UP’s decision to withdraw from the annual ATKV Serenade Competition, which takes place on a national level. In a letter addressed to ATKV, former acting Vice Principal of student affairs, Prof. Koornhof stated that the reasons for UP’s withdrawal included the #AfrikaansMustFall protest action that took place at UP in 2016 and the subsequent transformation talks.

A week ahead of the competition there are also concerns about the venue of the event.

Read more: Uncertainty about Serenade

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