First Postgraduate Open Day an all-round success

Annette Willemse -- Sun, 08/16/2015 - 11:50

First Postgraduate Open Day an all-round success

The first-ever Vaal Triangle Campus (NWU Vaal) Postgraduate Open Day was an all-round success with just short of 400 prospective postgraduate students registering for the event. 

The importance of postgraduate study in South Africa has been highlighted on several occasions and by various key role players. The National Development Plan (NDP, 2012) serves as such an example. According to the NDP the country is set to increase the number of doctorates from 1 400 per year nationally to 6 000 by 2030. The latter poses a significant challenge for Higher Education in South Africa, and as the North-West University we eagerly embrace this challenge.

Prof Linda du Plessis     Academic schools and research groups
hosted presentations

According to Prof Linda du Plessis, Vice-Rector of the NWU Vaal, postgraduate study can prove to be an exciting route to advancing within the sphere of an existing career as well as opening up new employment opportunities.  “I believe that this event and your interest in furthering your studies will not only contribute towards the strengthening of our research capacity, but will also aid in producing the advanced skills that our country so desperately needs,” said Prof Du Plessis during the official welcoming ceremony.  “Whether you are new to the NWU or already a student of one of our campuses, the Postgraduate Open Day is an ideal opportunity to learn more about our postgraduate offerings, our research capabilities, and to meet our highly-sought after staff and current students.” In her address, Prof Du Plessis also motivated the prospective postgraduate students to consider a career in academia and by doing so pro-actively contribute towards the development of  a knowledge-based economy that speaks to innovation, dynamic transformation and a culture of continued learning.

The programme of the day included presentations by the various academic schools and research groups, a tour of the state-of-the-art Learning and Research Commons and, an interactive panel discussion titled: “Why do postgraduate studies?”

Interactive panel discussion

This discussion was facilitated by Prof Susan Coetzee-van Rooy (Research Director: UPSET) and the panel included Dr Costa Synodinos (Faculty of Economic Sciences and Information Technology), Dr Angelique van Rensburg (Faculty Humanities), Prof Ian Rothmann (Research Director: OPTENTIA) and Prof Babs Surujlal (Research Director: Faculty of Economic Sciences and Information Technology).

During the discussion, Prof Rothmann identified four main reasons that - according to him, warrants postgraduate studies:

  1. To provide much needed knowledge, skills and passion to grow the economy and promote quality of life.
  2. To allow you to link your future to your purpose in life: passion for your subject is an important reason for study.
  3. To allow you to enter employment with additional skills and knowledge.
  4. To prepare you for an increasingly competitive jobmarket which requires lifelong learning.
The interactive panel discussion took place
in the Learning and Research Commons
Prof Susan Coetzee-van Rooy facilitated the
interactive discussion session
A panel of four research experts shared their insight and experience 
as it pertains to postgraduate studies

Apart from the academic and research presentations various support departments were also on standby to answer questions pertaining to financing, bursaries and postgraduate accommodation.  For more information regarding postgraduate studies, please contact Academic Administration on: 016 910 3093 (for Honours applications) and 016 910 3340 (for Master's and Doctoral applications).