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Wits attracts postgraduate students

- Refilwe Mabula

Postgraduate students get connected with Wits and its resources at the annual Postgraduate Welcome Day.

Wits’ Vision 2022 Strategic Framework sets out the vision that the University intends to pursue by the year 2022. As part of this vision, the framework is aimed at elevating Wits’ position to one of the internationally leading research-intensive universities, as well as a gateway to knowledge and understanding in Africa.

The University currently has about 8500 registered postgraduate students and a total number of 11500 postgraduate students are expected to register at Wits this year.

These figures were shared by Professor Mary Scholes, Director of Postgraduate Affairs during her welcome address at the Postgraduate Welcome Day yesterday.

With the large numbers of postgraduate students the institution is attracting, Wits is well on its way towards achieving its vision.

Scholes assured students that Wits was the right choice for them to pursue their postgraduate studies.

“You have chosen the right institution. We have wonderful supervisors. We have good intellectual discourse with students and we have good research facilities.”

She further enlightened the students on the role of the Postgraduate Affairs Office, which assists students with funding, and organises workshops and symposiums.

“My office at Wits serves you, and what we would like to do at Wits is to make your life as easy as possible for you. We offer 50 workshops and writing retreats per year,” she said.

These retreats are aimed at helping students to write in an intellectual manner to produce publications. Scholes urged the postgraduate students to take advantage of these workshops and writing retreats, especially as they are free of charge.

Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Research and Postgraduate Affairs, Professor Zeblon Vilakazi, who also addressed the students, said that researchers are important because their work plays a key role in addressing some of the country’s future challenges.

He encouraged the students to use their studies as a stepping stone towards attaining a fruitful career.

“Getting a PhD is your first building block of a rich career. But at least, having sacrificed your first BMW to come here and depend on stipends that Professor Scholes spoke about, means that you have made the right choice of pushing the boundaries of science,” he said.