6 ADVERT Friday, April 6 2018| NEW ERA Official Weekly Communique of the University of Namibia - Volume 10 BALANCING ACT IN A FINITE ECOSYSTEM UNAM introduces new prorammes: MA Development Studies, BSc Occupational Therapy, BSc Physiotherapy & BSc Dentistry What is it that global pandemics, climate change and poverty have in common? Is it the fact that all three phenomena are universal? Is it that they heavily shape the face of the 21 st century agenda? For Professor Lazarus Hangula, UNAM’s Vice Chancellor, the answer is coexistence. The world is a “finite ecosystem where survival, progress and sustainability are doomed to coexist.” If this is true, then it only seems right that institutions for higher learning assimilate education programmes towards this end, considering tertiary institutions navigate the immediate future of the world. It becomes easy to see where the new Master of Arts in Development Studies programme, which has been added to the university’s curriculum, fits in this discourse. With 400 applicants recorded at the Oshakati Campus and only took in 35 for the 2018 academic year, the initial signs point heavily towards its popularity within the Namibian society. “...medical experts need to realise that ill-health is not only a medical problem, but also a social, economic and governance problem.” Development Studies, therefore, become “the balancing act”, and the “coexistence” that Professor Hangula stressed is inevitable, becomes evident. Indeed, the same can be said of the new Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy programme. Former President, and UNAM outgoing Chancellor, H.E. Dr Hifikepunye Pohamba, in reference to the graduation of UNAM’s first ever medical doctors, spoke of how “...our country is committed to its national agenda of meeting development goals,” including universal access to health. The role of the Occupational Therapy degree, to this end, therefore, is to steer the national agenda towards universal access to healthcare, by creating a whole new medical field in Namibia. One which has not been as defined as it could be. Physiotherapy and Dentistry add to this optimism, as two previously non-existent fields in Namibia’s tertiary environment, have been inducted this year. Of course, these are potential job creating arenas, but they also address what the Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences, Professor Peter Nyarang’o, identifies as “...a huge shortage of health professionals in Namibia.” HUMANITIES JOURNAL ACHIEVES INTERNATIONAL INDEXING The dynamic Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences scored a first last week when its peer-reviewed publication, Journal for Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences, finally got indexed in the International Scientific Indexing (ISI). The Founding Editor of the journal and Dean of the Faculty, Prof Jairos Kangira could not hide his excitement when he explained the importance of the indexing or listing of the journal by ISI. “The ISI server provides indexing services to major international journals and it’s not a mean feat that this UNAM journal has accomplished; it has been rigorously scrutinised and has been indexed. What it means is that our journal has a very high scientific quality and we must be proud of this achievement,” explained Prof Kangira. He added that the other advantage of the indexing of the journal by ISI was that the journal and its contributors will now have wider visibility and readership. “We will also receive the Impact Factor of the journal periodically from ISI and this will assist us in gauging ourselves against other international academic giants. I am very happy that my Faculty has done it, UNAM has done it and we have all done it! We are now part of the Fresh Ideas for Growing your Citations international family. This is good for the ranking of UNAM among other international higher education institutions,” concluded the ecstatic Professor. Prof Kangira thanked Prof J. Hunter (Outgoing Editor) and Dr N. Mlambo (Assistant Editor) for working together with him as a team in producing the Faculty journal. “Without their efforts and sacrifice, this journal would not be where it is now, and I wish to sincerely thank the two gentlemen,” said Prof Kangira. The Journal for Studies and Humanities was launched by the Vice Chancellor, Prof Lazarus Hangula on 15 June 2012. It has since published six volumes and will publish its seventh volume this year. Prof Jairos Kangira MORE STUDENTS OF SAN HERITAGE GRADUATE The University of Namibia will, on Thursday and Friday next week, cap its graduates at a ceremony to be hosted at the Safari Hotel in the capital. Amongst them will be Helena Afrikaner, signing out as University alumna with a Diploma in Accounting and Auditing. A visibly elated Helena, who attributed her success to her “faith in God”, as well as her ability to stay level headed and focused, spoke to FORUM Weekly on her overall university experience, and her feeling ahead of the big day. “I am proud of myself,” said Helena. “The three years went by fast. It was tough, especially considering my background. But it all depends on your mind-set. You need a positive mind-set and to know where you are coming from and where you are going also.” Helena, who is of San heritage, shared the different obstacles she had to face early on, especially because of her cultural background. “We had no books, no decent uniforms and, at times, breakfast was the only meal of the day.” Fortunately, for Helena, financial assistance for her academic years “was always covered by the Division of Marginalised Communities.” The Division San Development is a special programme under the auspices of the Office of the Prime Minister, focused on resettlement, sustainable livelihood support programmes, education, land and incomegenerating initiatives for marginalised communities. Helena joins a growing list of students of San heritage graduating from the University. In 2017, Rosalia Sindimba, graduated with a Higher Diploma in Accounting and Auditing at the Rundu Campus, raising the number to three San graduates in three years across two campuses. On her plans for the future, Helena, who is intent on enrolling with the University to pursue a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting, said, “I want a decent job. I want to be financially stable and be my own boss.” For now, however, advocating for greater representation of her culture remains a mission firmly on her mind. Helena Afrikaner joins a growing list of students of San heritage graduating from the University of Namibia.
Friday, April 6 2018 | NEW ERA 7 FEATURE In the limelight… ‘The Process’. Photo contributed The Process: A tale of adversities of a young woman Alvine Kapitako Windhoek Seven years ago, if you had told Sesilia Nekwaya that she would be an author of a book, she would have brushed off the idea. Today, the self-published, 26-year-old is a proud author of the book titled “The Process”. “Growing up, I desired to have New Era this week, as she narrated how the book was birthed. New Era Youth Corner readers wanting to buy the book. The support she has received is is beyond what she had expected. over 300 copies, exactly one week and one day after the book was launched. all over the country were supportive and expressed that they could not wait for the book to be printed,” Nekwaya said enthusiastically. Nekwaya had 130 readers, who had paid for their book orders. “People were ordering and I interest that I got. The interest is she added. In the book, Nekwaya takes the reader through her life challenges crisis and how that shaped her into The book is special, she added. uncut”. She candidly put it this way: “The book is about things that people and the negative thoughts.” A scan book is popular, as people are constantly enquiring on how they could get a copy. I had read a book like that before, The book, Nekwaya said, is dedicated to young girls, especially those in high school and university because they are easy targets of identity crises. In fact, Nekwaya plans to have talks with high school learners by sharing her story, which she hopes that teenagers and young adults Growing up, Nekwaya had positions in high school, including head girl. At university (in 2011) accepted. She started to party, lost focus and into her second year, she fell pregnant. Not long after that, and after exactly one week of Photo contributed Motherly support… who is seven years her senior, decided he did not want to be was annulled. I was in a very bad place. I just how I got here,” Nekwaya looked She prayed for a second chance and vowed to be focused if God added, reciting her prayer: “God if that I had, I will do better.” After giving birth, she went back to Today, Nekwaya is an Assistant especially broken people, that regardless of where they have been. with its own challenges, one of struggled with giving the book a title. insecure (growing up),” she said. “When I sent the book to the everything I aspired to be (when negative and the positive,” she said, adding, “Therefore, people should focus their attention on positive thoughts.” Although it is too soon, Nekwaya with Grade 12s”, she said.