VUT 2023 ORIENTATION WEEK GETS UNDERWAY WITH A TWIST OF FUN AND DEVELOPMENT OF COMPETENCY SKILLS
By: Qhawekazi Memani – 15 February 2023
VUT Faculty of Engineering first year students during orientation at the Desmond Tutu Great Hall
The Vaal University of University (VUT) 2023 first-year students had the honor of attending a face-to-face orientation after this important event in the academic calendar of newcomers was held through an online and blended approach in the last two years due to COVID-19 precautionary measures.
The VUT orientation week, famously known as O-Week began on a high note with excitement, dancing and laughter as thousands of first year students showed up at the VUT Vanderbijlpark campus on 13 February 2023. The orientation week is set to run until 24 February 2023 and is organised by the Centre of Academic Development (CAD) together with the Student Support Services Department (SSS) and the four faculties within VUT.
With plenty of foot traffic along VUT’s corridors and precincts, the new students made their way to the Desmond Tutu Great Hall and the Amphitheatre where the orientation was conducted by the faculty Executive Deans, Head of Departments (HOD’s) and support department staff. The students later moved to enjoy guided tours around campus.
According to Dr Jeremiah Madzimure: First Year Coordinator within the CAD, the O-Week is designed to help new students understand the University’s learning and teaching environment and assist them in conforming and familiarizing themselves with the campus and other services rendered by VUT. During each session, Dr Madzimure encouraged the first years to utilise the VUT online module which is designed for student use and to make use of all support structures at their disposal.
Additionally, Mr Madzimure urged the first-year students to voice their orientation 2023 experiences through real-time interactions and a survey that will be uploaded on the VUT first year orientation online module.
Junior Mathiso: first year Chemical Engineering student, was amongst the students who attended the orientation for the Faculty of Engineering and toured the campus. “Attending the orientation was great for me. I wanted to identify with my lecturers and tutorial classrooms before the commencement of classes. It was pretty interesting to see what the University has to offer and I look forward to my stay,” he said.
Bongiwe Mbele and Mulalo Mahlatsi who both senior students and were now part of the acting mentors during the orientation week, stated that when they were admitted to join the University they did not have an opportunity to explore the campus like the 2023 first year students did. “Being part of the experience and assisting has been very fulfilling,” they said.
A prevalent message delivered by all the Deans and HODs was that now that the students are in university, learning is different and they are fully responsible for their learning, lecturers act as catalysts and in three years’ time they are expected to graduate. Above all, the newbies were advised to choose friends wisely and develop competency skills like emotional intelligence.
The orientation week will be accompanied by a sports day, a welcome day on Saturday, 18 February 2023 and academic success workshops which are due to take place on Monday, 20 – 24 February 2023 for each faculty.
MORE INFORMATION ON ORIENTATIONS
To watch video’s by different faculty executive deans and to access information about the orientation, kindly visit the following link: https://www.vut.ac.za/first-year-experience/