Change the world

The third COVID-19 wave is due to hit the two big Eastern Cape metros of Nelson Mandela Bay and Buffalo City by the end of March/beginning of April. This is sooner than expected and we are confident of the prediction as it is based on a range of local and regional data and on a year of national modelling, from the time that COVID-19 hit South Africa in March 2020.

It is a massive concern that the official unemployment rate among people aged 15 to 34 in the fourth quarter of 2020 was 46%. 

When Klaus Schwab, the Founder and Executive Chairman of the World Economic Forum, coined the phrase ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution’ (4IR), he argued that this new industrial revolution would happen at an exponential pace, and that new technologies would change society in unpredictable ways. 

It is often hard to find light in the seemingly endless pandemic. Still, perhaps the single most valuable consequence for higher education during this time is that it has forced us to reimagine ways in which to reach and engage our students, industries and communities, and provided unexpected insights into what is possible when technology is optimally leveraged.

SA’s 10th medical school opens its doors this year at Nelson Mandela University after the idea of building a medical school in Port Elizabeth was first mooted in the 1940s.

A Covid-19 resurgence is upon us, as evidenced by the rising number of cases nationally. In particular, the Nelson Mandela Bay metro and George, where our campuses are situated, have been flagged as hotspots as the numbers continue to rise.

It takes a village to raise a child, and our experience from the onset of the coronavirus pandemic has demonstrated that our “village ” has many actors, or stakeholders, willing to ensure that our children achieve holistic education outcomes in a system still characterised by glaring inequality, especially in socio-economically marginalised communities.

The Covid-19 pandemic has forced academics to reflect and reimagine teaching and learning.

Professor Lungile Pepeta passed away on August 7. He was just 46 years of age.

The rural village of Ludeke in the town of Mbizana in the Alfred Nzo region of our province, birthed, grew and honed a fine young man, who would not only make them proud, but also ceaselessly exemplify his roots — humble beginnings, reaffirm his identity and most importantly, connect and carry the aspirations of his people, particularly the youth. 

Has the Eastern Cape hit the peak of the Covid-19 pandemic? While this question is on the lips of many, the answer, at least for the Eastern Cape, is no.

Right now South Africa needs to start reimagining our schools as places of hope and opportunity, not only for our children but for the residents of the area in which they are situated.

I write this reflection on those “Six Days in August” (the title of a DVD by Mikale Barry), the Northern Areas uprising in 1990, with a visceral memory of that tumultuous time in our history.

A shortage of nurses and doctors, coupled with the health sector's failure to have a coordinated response in the Eastern Cape, has ensured a tsunami wave is on its way, the dean of the Department of Health Sciences at the Nelson Mandela University, Professor Lungile Pepeta, has told News24. 

Hospitals in Nelson Mandela Bay were implementing emergency plans on Monday as the number of coronavirus cases in the metro neared 5,000 and was expected to double in the next 10 days.

Some schools, predominantly the better-resourced schools, have been able to carry on with teaching online whereas in many other schools, learners have had to make do with a couple of radio and television lessons.

Who would have thought that internal marketing would pay off at a time like this? Where traditional marketing focuses on satisfying external customers, internal marketing focuses on keeping internal customers — that is, the employees — happy.

The Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown have created significant challenges for the higher education sector, and our universities and colleges are working hard on strategies and solutions to achieve the end goal of catching up and completing the 2020 academic year.

Nelson Mandela University’s conundrum – online teaching when 35% of students don’t have digital access.

We need to mask up and ramp up local solutions to break the Covid-19 transmission chain in our diverse urban, township, informal settlement and rural communities.

The Covid-19 pandemic has shown the need for South Africa to manufacture life-saving drugs.