New NWU office reaches out to the community
The North-West University (NWU) considers its involvement in communities a very high priority. That is why community service, along with research and training, is the foundation on which the university rests.
Our involvement in the community is so important that it has been decided to formalise it through the Institutional Community Service Engagement Office. On the Potchefstroom Campus, Dr Hendri Coetzee will head a directorate under the guidance of the Institutional Office and he will also form part of the Extended Executive Committee of our campus from this year.
The purpose of the office is to provide the necessary guidance and support to campus management as well as staff and students. One of the first tasks of the office, in collaboration with the University’s Institutional Community Service Engagement Office, was to develop a policy for community involvement. Besides the policy:
a database was developed to track the campus’ community involvement;
awareness programs of community involvement are available;
committees from each faculty were established;
a Campus Coordinating Committee was established;
Staff and students receive support.
Available data shows that at least 350 community-related activities are undertaken by NWU staff and students. Most of these activities are in the form of non-discipline based outreach programmes that is undertaken by the students of the NWU Potchefstroom Campus, followed by various research and teaching-learning activities driven by staff, mostly on faculty levels.
Although the NWU has been involved in communities for a long time , the impact of these activities has never been measured. The NWU is currently working to do so, by trying to determine what its impact is by means of various indicators. The University goes further by also trying to determine the needs, strengths and welfare of these communities, so that the true needs of these communities are met in the future. With this initiative the NWU hopes to make an even greater contribution to communities in the future.