Vol9 no6 2017
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OFF WE GO!
This month’s cover picture is the creative work of Visual Communication (Photography) student, MPHO KHOROMBI.
SHARP CUT! DEWET WILLEMSE (23), a third-year Interior Design student at the Department of Visual Communication, designed the interior for this funky barber shop, called Sharp Cut, as part of a project by City Property, in which DeWet triumphed. The project challenged students to design interiors for various outlets at 012 Central, a multi-space precinct in the heart of our capital. City Property might propose the design to a potential tenant. The design has a masculine feel and resembles a place where the modern man would hang out and have a haircut.
please send your name and cell number to firstname.lastname@example.org on or before 29 September. Mark the subject field: WATER
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“My mind is not blind”
Rebone was born the second of four children in a rural village called Ga-Matsepe near Groblersdal in the Limpopo Province. Until the age of 16, she lived a fairly normal life, doing the things that teenagers typically do and dreaming of a bright future. Then, her life unexpectedly took a 360 degree turn.
Her vision had deteriorated severely and she was forced to drop out of high school. “I couldn’t manage any longer and the school had no knowledge of how to accommodate a visually impaired learner,” she recalls.
In the hope of putting a name to her condition and to find
professional help, her desperate parents, Sharon and Johannes,
relocated to Alexandra, north of Johannesburg. It was at the
St Johns Hospital where she was diagnosed with a form
of Glaucoma, a disease that damages the eye’s optic nerve.
Rebone was told that there was no turning back.
“It was a very difficult time. I lost a lot of friends.” The go-getter had to make a decision: sink or swim.
She chose the latter and later on returned to school to repeat Grade 8. This time round, she enrolled at institutions that catered for and understood her needs, firstly at the Sibonile School for the Blind, and
thereafter at the Filadelfia Secondary School, where
she completed Grade 12 in 2013. “There I met
people who were born blind. I realised that
I actually still had a lot to be thankful for,”
When enrolling at TUT’s Department of Primary Education for a Bachelor of Education earlier this year, she received mobility training to be able to find her way around the campus, including her residence. She needs special software, such as JAWS (Job Access With Speech), the world’s most popular screen reader, developed for computer users whose vision loss prevents them from seeing screen content or navigating with a mouse. JAWS provides speech and Braille output for the most popular computer applications on a PC. She is still to get these important devices to assist her to succeed in her studies.
It’s a daily challenge with ups and downs, but Rebone is coping with the support of friends and staff, such as her guardian angel, Dr Mumthaz Banoobhai, Head of the Department of Primary Education, who looks out for her. Her other role models are Hendrietta Bogopane-Zulu, Deputy Minister of Social Development, who is also an alumna of TUT, and a former Maths teacher at Filadelfia, Ms Maseko, who is blind, but persevered to become a Maths teacher even though she was discouraged to do so.
Rebone’s long-time goal is to own a school, consisting of mixed learners (abled and disabled). She believes that such integration is vital to create a society where people from different backgrounds and with different abilities can better understand one another.
“My mind is not blind. I’m able to do anything that
You’ll have to look really far to find a bigger inspiration than Rebone Mogale (25), the first blind Education student studying at the Soshanguve-North Campus. She shared her story of hope with Heita!
Rebone Mogale (25), the first blind Education student studying at the Soshanguve-North Campus.
"I realised that I actually still had a lot to be thankful for.”
KOKETSO SETAU (22)
“I need a leader who listens to us and understands our needs, as well as someone who addresses issues affecting us. Student problems are often undermined by superiors. I want leadership that will change that for the better.”
DORCAS MKHATYWA (21)
Human Resource Management
“I look for someone who has good communication skills. That person must also be able to motivate those he/she leads, but the most important thing for me is innovation. I want someone who will break the traditional norms of student leadership.”
LEHLOGONOLO BADIMO (21)
“I look forward to having an empathetic leader, someone who will see life from a student’s perspective. He/she needs to be loving, caring and kind because those are the characteristics we seldom see in our leadership.”
NICOLAS DU PLESSIS (22)
“It should be someone who can think out of the box. We need leaders who can come up with creative ways of resolving student issues, especially concerning our academic life.”
PROMISE KAUNDI (24)
“That person needs to advocate for students’ rights. He/she must lead by example in conducting themselves as one who other students would like to follow.”
STOFFEL FOURIE (22)
“A student leader needs to be competent, someone who will take on a proactive leadership style. As students, we are used to things taking a long time before they can be implemented or end up not implemented at all. The next leader should change that.”
SHIRLEY NSINGWANE (21)
“A student leader should be someone who is willing to listen to
our concerns and escalate them to the relevant people. For instance, we have issues with residences, which is something that has been there for years. Yet, we still feel like nothing is being done about it.”
ANTON VAN RENSEN (24)
“I would love to have a leader who solves students’ problems in a civilised manner because disruptiveness has become the norm when students have issues to raise. I also want a leader who will acknowledge the need for the necessary tools to improve our academics.”
TO VIEW ANSWERS,
CLEAR AS GLASS
GOING DUTCH FOR
Liesl Roos (24), a Master’s degree Fine and Applied Arts student, became part of a close-knit international community of students when she jetted off to Amsterdam in the Netherlands in August.
Liesl Roos (24) with one of her artworks.
The small-framed artist, specialising in glass, was accepted at the prestigious Gerrit Rietveld Academie, an international university of applied sciences for Fine Arts and Design. This followed after her protégé and lecturer, Retief van Wyk, submitted a portfolio of her work to the institution.
Liesl will study at the University’s Large Glass Department, which offers a material-based study in the fine-arts and encourages students to experiment and explore the limits of materiality.
“I’m a little nervous, but am looking forward to the opportunity and to see how it will influence my art-making,” she told Heita! shortly before she left. She aims to bring glass art, which is unfortunately still seen as a craft material in some courters, to the arts forefront, also in her Master’s degree studies.
The title of her dissertation is Investigating the possibilities of glass as a sculptural medium through the works of contemporary artists. Her work also focuses on the current conditions and fragility of the environment.
Liesl’s résumé includes an impressive list of solo and group exhibitions in which she participated alongside some well-established artists, such as Diane Victor.
In Amsterdam, it will not be all work and no play. The programme, among others, includes a trip to Documenta 2017 in Kassel, Germany. Documenta is one of the most important art exhibitions in the world and takes place only once every five years. Of course, exploring Europe is also high on Liesl’s agenda.
For more information on the Gerrit Rietveld Academie, click here. The landing page of its website is curated by a different student, department or alumni student presenting work in progress or in its final phase on a weekly basis.
THIS IS MY HERITAGE
Two views on
They say that to know where you’re going, you should know where you’re coming from. Zizipo Mbeki (25), Editor of Bua student newspaper, and Nico Sibanyoni (28), a Debate Coach at the Directorate: Extracurricular Development, share their views on heritage, tolerance and respect for that of others.
Nico Sibanyoni (28)
and Zizipo Mbeki (25).
WILL THE WORLD BE A BETTER PLACE IF PEOPLE FOCUS ON
THEIR SIMILARITIES, RATHER THAN THEIR DIFFERENCES?
Z: Our differences are what make us the beautiful rainbow nation that we are. This world would be a better place if
we learn to embrace and appreciate each other’s uniqueness, rather than focussing on the differences.
N: Not necessarily, our differences will exist even if we don’t focus on them. It would help us to relate better though, as
for the world being a better place, I don’t know.
• Zizipo has received a scholarship to study Sciences in Hungary and has left for that country earlier in September. Good luck!
WHAT DO YOU CONSIDER TO BE YOUR HERITAGE?
Z: I am a proud Xhosa woman, born in the Eastern Cape.
N: I am Ndebele, however I identify myself more as a Black South
African, and I consider that as my heritage.
WHAT ARE THE BIGGEST PREJUDICES/MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT
Z: There is a misconception that Xhosa people are economical with the
truth. Another very welcomed stereotype is that we are a clever bunch.
N: As a Ndebele man, many believe we are not smart and disorderly. This couldn’t be further from the truth.
WHAT DO YOU TYPICALLY DO ON HERITAGE DAY?
Z: I spend time with family. Heritage is not something you celebrate once
a year. It is something you honour and celebrate in the little things that
you do daily.
N: In the past two years, I’ve had the privilege of being part of a task
team that organised Heritage Day celebrations for residences. Other than that, I have not commemorated Heritage Day.
HOW AWARE ARE YOU OF OTHER CULTURES’ BELIEFS AND TRADITIONS?
DO YOU RESPECT THEM?
Z: I live in a multicultural environment, so awareness of other cultures comes with the territory. I do my best to respect other people’s traditions.
N: I would like to believe that I make an effort to learn other people’s cultures and be respectful towards them.
WITH ELEVEN OFFICIAL LANGUAGES, CAN SOUTH AFRICANS DO MORE
TO LEARN OTHER INDIGENOUS LANGUAGES?
N: Yes, but it’s not as easy when you are an adult.
JT Medupe graduated from TUT with a National Diploma in Drama in 2010. He has since appeared in a number of TV programmes, including Sokhulu and Partners and also got to portray a grown-up Jonathan Motene when Generations returned to the screen after being off-air for a while. Jackey chatted to the star.
YOU PLAYED AN OLDER JONATHAN MOTENE WHEN GENERATIONS RETURNED TO THE SCREEN AS GENERATIONS THE LEGACY. HOW WAS THAT EXPERIENCE? It was exciting and nerve-wrecking at the same time. It brought about a great deal of growth. I have always dreamt of being part of such a big soapie, so it really was a dream that came true. Everyone there is very friendly and very good at what they do. I totally loved it.
YOU ARE WORKING BEHIND THE SCENES NOW . . .
I write and produce my own work. I'm also a freelance voice artist and casting assistant. It's good to have more than one area of specialisation because this is a cut-throat industry. If you have other talents, explore them and flourish.
ANY WORDS OF ENCOURAGEMENT FOR STUDENTS, ESPECIALLY THOSE STUDYING IN THE ARTS? If you are entering the industry for fame and fortune, I'm afraid you are in for a surprise. It's a very challenging industry. It’s a dog-eats-dog industry. But if you've got the talent and passion, you'll be fine. Just keep the dream alive. Keep the fire burning. All the best!
WHEN DID YOU START ACTING? In high school. I just didn't think I would actually be brave enough to make a career out
HOW DID YOUR PARENTS FEEL WHEN YOU DECIDED TO STUDY DRAMA? At first, my mother was worried that I was going to struggle making ends meet, as any parent would be. She didn't understand why and how people could study "acting". But as soon as she saw me on stage, how happy and how good I was, she knew I had made the right choice. She told me to follow my dream. Sadly, my father passed away before I knew I wanted to be an actor. I sometimes wonder what his reaction would've been.
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Heita! is an electronic student newsletter of the Tshwane University of Technology (TUT).
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It’s easy! All you have to do is answer the following
question (don’t fret, you should get the answer somewhere
in this edition): WHAT IS THE NAME OF THE BLIND
STUDENT FEATURED IN THIS EDITION?
MALEBO DITSHEGO (25), an IT student at the Soshanguve Campus, is the winner of the competition featured in Heita! Vol9 no5 2017.
SPEND THE R300 WISELY.
The winner of the WINE GLASS SET IS: DUMISANE LUBISI (21), a Civil Engineering student at the Pretoria Campus.
All work and no play make Jack (and Jill) a dull boy (and girl).