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SDS hosts its 7th Annual Student Achievement Awards​

Author: Sikhulule Nkomphela

Student leaders and participants celebrated their triumphs at the 2017 UWC Student Development and Support Awards, and were rewarded for living the SDS motto: “Creating your future”.

2017 Student Development and Support Student Achievement Awards​: Creating Your Future

The University of the Western Cape, under the Office of the Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Student Development and Support (SDS), Prof Pamela Dube, hosted its 7th Annual SDS Student Achievement Awards​ that recognizes the achievements and potential of some of the University’s most exciting student involvements.

The aim of the occasion was to thank those students who tirelessly dedicate their time and effort throughout the year towards UWC’s national and international success, and who empower and inspire their fellow students.

The evening also served as a platform to inspire and revitalise co-curricular participation among students - reminding them that the end goal of university is not just a degree, but the development of a balanced graduate who’s prepared to make a difference in the world.

Seven years ago, the need for a token of appreciation emerged for students for their tireless efforts through SDS. As many students would know, the SDS Awards was born in 2010, and over the last 7 years this event has been the flagship event on the ever-vibrant SDS cultural calendar.

“It is exactly eight days ago when we met here at this same Main Hall celebrating the many fantastic student athlete achievements in different sporting codes that excel in different local, national and international competitions”, Prof Dube highlighted in her opening and welcoming remarks. At the outset, she further thanked the students for living the SDS motto - “Creating your future” - as students utilised their own strength, abilities, relationships and environment to make it possible to bring about change which makes this ceremony a reality tonight - she urged.

“This event reminds us that there is a purpose that we need to fulfil, and every role player has a part to play,” Prof Dube said, “and we need to utilise events like awards and dialogue sessions to rekindle our mission - and frankly, to repair what to many may already appear as irreparably burned bridges.”

Students were recognised for their outstanding contributions in 7 different categories, and the prizes were proudly sponsored by the office of the DVC – SDS. The victor in each category was awarded a certificate and trophy.

Below are the winners for each category:

  1. Student Leadership - Zolani Myalo
  2. Social Responsibility - Eugene Maswanganye
  3. Entrepreneurship - Mahlangabeza Jordan
  4. Student Mentoring - Sinethemba Dyasi
  5. Student Tutoring & Academic Support - Emmanuel Bhengu
  6. Student Orientation Programme - Sinethemba Dyasi
  7. Work Study Programme - Lester Malgas​

There were also overall top achiever awards presented: the Top Achiever Female and Male each went away with a cheque of R5 000. And lastly, but not least, a R 15 000 cheque was awarded to the Outstanding Top Overall Achievers. Those top achievers were:

  1. Top Female Achiever - Thembi Kgatlana​
  2. Top Male Achiever - Sinethemba Dyasi
  3. Overall Achiever - Sinethemba Dyasi

Guest speaker, Dr. Funeka Bango, echoed Prof Dube’s sentiments.

“I wanted to share with everyone in the audience that success is not dependent on one's background, how rich or how poor you are or even where you come from,” she said. “Success can be achieved if one chooses friends and mentors that are supportive of your dreams, and if you do not limit yourself, and you follow your heart.”​​​​​

The ceremony closed on a literal high note, with students showing off yet more impressive talents through dancing, singing and poetry.​

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