With the crime rate constantly on the rise in South Africa, the NWU prides itself on having campuses where staff and students feel safe and secure. The university’s Protection Services Department has put measures in place to ensure the safety of its campus communities. Des Ayob, director at the Protection Services Department at the NWU, says Protection Services is very proactive and follows an information-led approach. It also conducts stops and searches and observation duties, and ensures that there is a high security presence in affected areas. Crime prevention summits have also been launched at campuses to make the campus community more vigilant in terms of taking proactive measures to safeguard themselves from harm.
Des adds that to achieve their success, Protection Services works closely with external stakeholders such as the SAPS and private security companies.
Best of the best
In the recent StuDocu World University Ranking 2021, the NWU also received impressively high remote-learning and student experience scores. For remote learning the university received 9 out of 10 and was ranked fourth overall in the country for student experience. The NWU also had the highest local ranking of 9,4 for sports and shared the top spot for facilities with a score of 8,9.
The ranking survey asked current students and recent graduates to rank their universities on a scale of 0 to 10, with 0 being the lowest and 10 being the highest. This indicates the quality of NWU students’ perceived experience of remote operations during the pandemic.
The StuDocu World University Ranking is different from other rankings. Although it looks at academic reputation, it also includes campus life and factors that are specifically important in the student experience. It is the first time that South African universities have been included in the ranking.
This ranking takes into account the experiences of more than 45 000 students from 1 800 universities across 30 countries. The NWU was ranked 34th in the EMEA (Europe, the Middle East and Africa) region.
The ranking survey asked students to evaluate the universities in terms of 15 categories. These included elements like food, quality of life, the dating scene, studying remotely, safety, sports, culture, quality of courses, (on-campus) housing, location, facilities and common areas, academic reputation and job opportunities, fraternities, social clubs and students’ associations, accessibility for disabled students, financial aid, and diversity.
Prof Dan Kgwadi, vice-chancellor and principal of the NWU, says it is encouraging to see that the NWU’s valued student stakeholder group views the university in such a positive light.
“We see this as an affirmation of the safety, quality education and vibrant student life that the NWU has always been known for and that we continuously work towards enhancing and improving. We can see the results of the implementation of our strategy and ethic of care, into which our staff in both the academic and support areas have invested their time and expertise. We hope that the national vaccination programme will enable us to open our campuses fully for contact activities and classes in 2022.” DM