Page 2 - DUT Conduit Dec21
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Professor Sibusiso Moyo: Deputy Vice- Chancellor: Research, Innovation and Engagement
As we end 2021, I borrow from one of my favourite books on values,
The Values Compass: What 101 Countries Teach Us About Purpose, Life and Leadership by Dr Mandeep Rai. There are two classes of values which fit well with an end-of-year message. The first is focus and reflection on Connection Values, which are those that “shape our relationships with friends, family, colleagues, neighbours and strangers”. They apply in both our work and home environments. So, use this holiday as a checkpoint to ask yourself how you would want to be remembered in terms of your contribution to the DUT community, family, friends and those you interact with.
The second echelon of values are Core Values, which “define our core personality and motivation in life”. There are many who might, for one reason or another, have faced challenges and adversity. Remember to self-introspect, re-energise and find opportunities in whatever situation you find yourself in. Life in itself is complex and brings to the fore all types of seasons. Sometimes we celebrate, win, fail, mourn etc., but such is the way our universe was created. Other challenges emerge on the leadership front and as the 10-Day MBA short course taught me recently, there are four types of people one has to lead within the higher education environment (this probably applies to any organisation). Professor TE Cloete, Facilitator of the Executive Leadership Programme offered through Stellenbosch University, categorises them as follows: “Low relationship and high output; low relationship and low output; high relationship and low output and then high relationship and high output”. In 2022, aim for the fourth quadrant, which entails using your value system to build excellent professional relationships and high output at the same time. ENVISION2030 under the Stewardship perspective offers guidance on what we value as the DUT community. Help us build a better DUT brand that drives excellence and a value system that we want to be remembered for. At least we will have in our DUT memory the fact that, 2021 was the first time our institution was
ranked by the TIMES Higher Education World University Rankings.
We are proud of our staff who continue to make such a positive contribution to our University and the world. This exciting publication features the Co-leader of DUT’s Supporting Undergraduate Research Excellence (SURE) project, Dr Anisa Vahed. She is currently a visiting Fulbright Research Scholar at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU) in Prescott, Arizona, where she is engaging with a network of US colleagues on her Fulbright project titled, Advancing the Undergraduate Research-Teaching Nexus. In this edition, she shares her experience and her opportunity to engage with undergraduate students who demonstrated their knowledge and skills in multidisciplinary project-based research.
We also feature academic and motivational speaker, Dr Celeni Nyide, who reflects on his passion to drive the transformation agenda through his engagement at DUT and the communities he serves. He also speaks of his vision for the future which revolves around community development through education.
Also read about DUT’s newly named Innobiz DUT Centre for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, which serves as an umbrella centre for all entrepreneurial units within the University, as well as the achievements of some of our DUT staff at the recent Spring Graduation.
DUT has embraced, ENVISION2030, which will guide us through a decade of improving lives and livelihoods. Our strategic perspectives are: · Stewardship · Systems and Processes · Sustainability · Society. Being people-centred and engaged, innovative and entrepreneurial, is part of our DNA. Our environment is changing and DUT is positioning itself so that our people can participate productively
in the development of our region, country and the world. Together we can continue to find ways to drive our futures through ENVISION2030, with the exciting and rare opportunities it provides!
Last but not least, my personal best wishes to the entire DUT community this festive season. I also take the opportunity to thank our Vice-Chancellor & Principal, Professor TZ Mthembu and the DUT Management Team for steering us in the right direction through 2020 and 2021, despite the challenges posed by the pandemic.
May you and your loved ones stay blessed and be re-energised to face 2022! Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all.
Noxolo Memela: Communications Manager
As the year 2021 comes to an end, we should use this time to reflect and look back whilst looking into the future.
Despite being embattled by the COVID-19 pandemic we are grateful for the blessings that the Lord almighty bestowed on us not just as individuals but as the University community and as South Africans. Firstly, I would like to thank all our colleagues at the University for their on-going contributions to our DUT brand, especially the Communications and Corporate Affairs team during extremely challenging times.
One of the most serious challenges for anyone is being insecure
and the COVID-19 pandemic is likely to lead even the strongest people into insecurity, not only in relation to health issues and finances, but the possibility of losing someone due to the virus and the unpredictable future of institutions that we use or need to succeed as individuals. To counter the negative aspects of our lives right now, let us focus on how
we managed to excel as a University in so many respects.
As we head into 2022, let us view the year ahead as another opportunity to do right, regardless of the pandemic. Let us make 2022 a year in which DUT will continue to make the headlines for the right reasons. The achievements recorded by our research and entrepreneurship centres are a sign that DUT is a force to be reckoned with. Not only is the University producing the best entrepreneurs and research but our alumni continue to excel in leadership roles (former SRC Secretary General - Avela Mjajubana selected to the NYDA board; Acting Vice-President DUT Convocation - Angel Mkhethi Sibisi appointed as Director: Marketing and Communications KZN Department of Trade and Investment; and Buka Magwaza and Cherise Elisha excelled at the Microbiology symposium in KZN). Indeed, the list of alumni who have made their mark is endless.
We value the contributions of our academics in the classroom, the safeguarding of our institution by our Executive Management, the guidance from our Council, and our students’ choice of DUT as their preferred institution of higher learning. We also salute our team members on the ground at operational level alongside their line managers for their immense contributions to our DUT home. I am confident that they will continue to invest in the betterment of DUT in 2022 and beyond. To those who did not have a good year in 2021, may 2022 erase your suffering and tears. May opportunities and goals that did not present themselves or succeed in 2021 take centre stage in 2022. While we all go through some form of downtime in our lives, it is up to us to rise and embrace the time we have been given and the opportunities presented to us.
Wishing you and your families a blessed, peaceful and healthy festive season. May 2022 be a year of abundance, joy, peace and productivity.
 Vice-Chancellor and Principal: Professor Thandwa Mthembu’s End of the Year Message A LONG AND A CHALLENGING 2021
The year 2021 has been a long and a challenging one; a difficult and a sad one. Life itself is just too difficult. Whoever said it could ever be easy? Many of us lost loved ones. May their souls rest in eternal peace. We experienced different sorts of pain and frustration. We may have contemplated throwing in the towel at some point, feeling valueless, useless and helpless. But, we chose to live on and, perhaps, live the legacies of our departed. The VUCA (volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous) world is an integral part of this difficult life. We nevertheless continued enthusiastically with multi-modal learning, especially online learning.
University education is not only about its mechanical aspects, but its
socialising aspects. Cultures and behaviours must be reshaped and moulded
accordingly. University education builds a more refined, complex and
sophisticated conceptual framework and belief system. It is not just about
the tangible output of the certificate, diploma or degree. It should also be
about lasting, life-changing and holistic outcomes. The graduate’s state of
mind, demeanour and behaviour is different from those who did not have similar opportunities. It is in this context that the Council-approved ‘Policy Choices regarding Vaccination of students and staff’, and visitors and service providers, seeks to safeguard the quality and the integrity of the education offered by DUT, as well as its socialising aspects. This is not only good for DUT, but for our region and country.
We have also had our fair share of proud and exciting moments. At the beginning of 2021 we demonstrated our stewardship, innovative and entrepreneurial flair, and our institutional resilience and sustainability. How many organisations and universities were able to give their staff a 6.5% increase as our Council did at the beginning of 2021? So many could not afford any increases at all. This was despite the fact that DUT’s 2021 allocations from the Department of Higher Education and Training were cut in terms of both block grants and earmarked funds. No miracle. Just astute governance, leadership and management. We also received even more national and international accolades during the course of 2021 than we received in 2020. No miracle. No favours. Pure excellence. We dared to dream. We lived those dreams. We dared to plant some seeds. Now is the moment to enjoy the harvest and the fruits. We now need to be gentle with ourselves. Let us take it easy. Let us replenish. Let us reinvigorate. Let us rest. I wish each and every DUT person and their families and friends a restful festive period. Let us celebrate responsibly and safely. COVID-19 has not
only estranged us from our past lives; it is now part of our lives. Let us not be complacent. God bless each and every one of us in the DUT community, our family and friends. God bless South Africa.
(excerpts taken from the Iminingo-Vice-Chancellor’s Communiqué)

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