On 23 and 24 February 2023, the University management and staff welcomed the recently registered new students to the University. During this annual event, the new students are given information that helps to navigate their way through campus, especially during the first few months of the year or semester.
Dr Paulette Naidoo, Director of Student Counselling at MUT said orientation was an important programme to introduce students to the university, which can be a challenging space to navigate for new students. The orientation gave students “a comprehensive overview of all support services and departments relevant to their academic and psychosocial needs,” explained Dr Naidoo whose unit is in the Department of Student Affairs. Dr Naidoo said the students’ entry at Seme Hall was symbolic of the beginning of their time at the University, and that this is where their time will end when they graduate.
Dr Naidoo, spoke to students about the importance of taking care of their mental health and well-being by seeking help timeously from the Student Counselling unit. She emphasised the unit’s commitment to the eradication of Gender-based violence (GBV) on campus and encouraged all students to report acts of GBV, and to seek the necessary support from Student Counselling in dealing with GBV. As done in previous years, the Student Counselling unit also invited representatives from the Thuthuzela Care Centre in Umlazi to reinforce student knowledge of and about GBV as well as to highlight the partnership which exists between MUT and Thuthuzela Care Centre in addressing the scourge of GBV.
Student Development Officer in the Department of Student Affairs, Dr Mthoko Ntuli, explained what life is like at the university. Dr Ntuli told the students that they will participate in the election of the Student Representative Council (SRC). Dr Ntuli impressed upon the students that there was a formal process that should be followed. This process is governed by formal University and government legislations, said Dr Ntuli, an expert in student governance matters.
Safety, Health and Environmental Officer at MUT, Lizwi Masondo, informed students about how to keep safe and comply with health and safety regulations during their stay at MUT. Masondo also indicated that health and safety were a collective responsibility of both staff and students and that everyone could play their part in ensuring a safe environment.
Masondo also made students aware of the necessary protocol to follow when there is an emergency evacuation drill.