Student leaders' selfless efforts hailed

02 November 2012 | Story by Newsroom

For a full-time student, combining academic work with anything else is not easy; especially if your extracurricular activity requires that you lead a UCT society, club or team. Some truly manage the juggling act with aplomb. Outstanding student leaders were recognised for their contributions to the UCT community at the Student Leadership Awards held on 25 October.

Student Leadership Awards Student Leadership Awards
Excellence acknowledged: Vice-Chancellor Dr Max Price with Lorne Hallendorff, this year's winner of the Vice-Chancellors Student Leader Award. Team spirit: The United Nations Association of South Africa, UCT Chapter received acknowledgment for its investments in the next generation of South African leaders. Registrar Hugh Amoore (third from right) presented the award to (from left) Maletsabisa Molapo, Darren Brookbanks, Jean Smuts, Kimeshan Naidoo, Kgomotso Malele, Tafadzwa Mautsa, Karusha Naidoo, Josh Platzky Miller and Helen Matienga.

The winners were:

  • The Vice-Chancellors Student Leader Award - Vice-chancellor Dr Max Price presented this to Lorne Hallendorff, outgoing SRC sports co-ordinator, who is responsible for reviving intervarsity sports between UCT and its traditional rival Stellenbosch University. He was also the driving force behind the orientation week sports showcase and tournament.
  • The Deputy Vice-Chancellor's Student Leader Award - Insaaf Isaacs, outgoing Students' Representative Council (SRC) president, under her leadership the SRC has implemented a mid-term performance review, 24-hour library service and brought a Student Wellness Clinic to upper campus; and Michael Marchant, who is the director of the Township Debating League and chairman of the UCT choir. He has managed to, under severe financial constraints, maintain the full operations of the Township Debating League, while simultaneous propelling the UCT Choir to national recognition. The award was presented by deputy vice-chancellor Professor Crain Soudien.
  • The Award for the Most Outstanding Leader in a Community Development Organisation - Rudo Pswarayi is the president of SHAWCO Health and is credited with planning and implementing basic mental health services at SHAWCO clinics, which included the development of screening tools, appropriate training of volunteers and the creation of support groups such as an antenatal support group in the Noordhoek clinic.
  • The Award for the Most Outstanding Leader in Student Media - Jessica Dewhurst has been involved with UCT Radio for two years and will serve as its marketing manager next year. She initiated several new outreach projects, one of which involves a partnership with the Edmund Rice Camps in a programme called Sponsor-A-Child, in which individuals can make a donation towards sending a child to a camp that focuses on life skills and creating opportunities for vulnerable youths.
  • The Award for the Most Outstanding Student Leader in a Postgraduate Faculty Council - Luke Kannemeyer, chair of the Health Science Students' Council, has worked tirelessly to improve career development for postgraduate students in his faculty and managed to secure sponsorship to refurbish the beloved Medical Alumni Club.
  • The Award for the Most Outstanding Student Leader in a Society - Sean Tromp, chairperson of the UCT Surgical Society, is the leader of a large organisation that is managed with enviable efficiency.
  • The Awards for the Most Outstanding Student Leader in an Undergraduate Faculty Council - Vusimuzi Baleni leads the Engineering and the Built Environment Students' Council and urged his council to not only focus on academics, but also to ensure that well-rounded individuals are graduating from UCT. The council hosted talks and workshops that promoted awareness in the fields of career development, student health and well-being.
  • The Executive Director: Student Affairs' Student Leader Awards - Baveena Nathoo was unanimously elected as SHAWCO education president in recognition of her consistent and selfless contribution to the organisation; and Michael Moss, SRC Societies co-ordinator. He is a founding member of the Students Against Secrecy movement, which actively campaigns against the so-called 'Secrecy Bill' currently being considered in Parliament.
  • Team of the Year - EBE Undergraduate Faculty Council, which despite lacking the legitimacy of an election made tangible changes in EBE that positively impacted the lives of students; and the UCT Chapter of the United Nations Association of South Africa, which saw its membership double in 2012.
  • The Award for the Most Outstanding Leader in a Residence - Miguel Rodo, head of Glendower residence, earned the respect of his peers by articulating a comprehensive proposal for the improvement of the infrastructure of the residence, which contributed to creating an enabling living and learning environment.
  • The Award for the Most Outstanding Leader in Sport - Ziningi Madonsela is the chairperson of UCT Netball and pioneered the Student's Sports Union's We are Aware campaign, with the aim of fostering social responsibility among the sports club and their participants, and also to encourage community involvement in reaching out to the disadvantaged.
  • In addition Jeremy Rose and Stephanie Venter received the Kerry Capstick-Dale Student Leader Award, while Sean Darge was the recipient of the Ackerman Family Foundation Award.

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