Message from the
AAs the year draws to a close, I want to thank you all for your continued commitment to the success of the NWU.
We commenced with a process of restructuring so that we would be better placed to implement our strategy. Virtually the whole of the senior management team is now in place and we can concentrate on realising our dream and purpose.
Importantly, we must align our institutional culture with the demands of our strategy. Projects for this have commenced in both the staff and student sphere. I urge all of you to participate in and support these initiatives.
Diversity, social inclusion and cohesion will be the organisational attributes that will enable us to fully succeed in realising our plans.
We have updated many of our policies in the past year or so and these policies reflect and are more closely aligned to our strategy. Nevertheless we must remember that our behaviour must be driven by our ethic of care.
Regardless of what our policies state, we must take responsibility for maintaining an environment where all feel welcome, integrated and included, and this must be driven by our values and ethos.
Challenges lie ahead in our environment, particularly the sustainability of the funding model for public higher education in South Africa. While undergraduate students’ access has been enhanced by the expansion of fee-free higher education, a large gap in postgraduate funding has developed.
We must make sure that we are able to improve our financial sustainability in future, within the constraints of the funding framework. This may well entail a more innovative approach to funding diversification than we currently employ.
We will be tackling new challenges within our new structure, in the knowledge that the old structure was simply not sustainable. The University Management Committee is looking at ways to clarify and strengthen our management model to make sure that we do not succumb to mindless bureaucracy and indecision caused by lack of role and responsibility clarification.
Finally, let me wish you a well-deserved rest during the summer break. I look forward to welcoming you back again in the new year so that we can tackle our challenges together.