Early this month the Counsellor of Cultural Affairs, Mr Zhouu Yong and he First Secretary (Education) from the Chinese Embassy in South Africa, Mr Wang Daoyu visited the Durban University of Technology. The two prestigious guests held a meeting with the Vice-Chancellor and Principal of DUT, Professor Thandwa Mthembu, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research, Innovation and Engagement, Professor Sibusiso Moyo, the Co-Dean of the Confucius Institute, Mr Frank Lin Wu and the Director of International Education& Partnerships, Dr Lavern Samuels.
The visitor from the Chinese Embassy were formally welcomed by Prof. Mthembu formally and in his welcome address, the Vice-Chancellor and Principal of DUT expressed his sincere gratitude to them. He emphasized that it was time for all stakeholders to sit and discuss the future of the DUT CI collaborations and research priorities with Chinese Universities, with the support and assistance from the Chinese Government at their Embassy in Pretoria, South Africa.
Since this was the first visit of Mr. Zhou to DUT, DVC: RIE, Prof Moyo, in her remarks provided some historic context on the developments of the DUT CI, since its establishment in 2013, during the visit of the Chinese President, Mr XI Jingping to RSA to attend the first BRICS Summit at the Durban International Convention Center.
In his presentation, Mr. Yong, congratulated Prof Mthembu on the prestigious Award received during the 2018 International Global CI Conference in China in December 2018. He also highly praised DUT and its CI’s efforts to partner with the eThekwini Municipality, the Chinese Consulate General and local society to greatly promote the mutual understanding of both countries’ culture and to facilitate the cooperation in varied ways between two countries. He was impressed by the newly launched Great Wall Skills Training Center/ Chinese + Vocational Skill Practice Center at local Chinese Clothing Manufacturing Company for providing local communities and students skills training and internship opportunities.
Mr. Daoyu highlighted that one of his priorities as the First Secretary for Education will be to focus on attracting greater numbers of Chinese students to study in South African universities. He believed that South African Universities had the best academic resources on the African Continent and “we should attract more Chinese students to advance their Study Abroad experiences and to enable them to study for their Masters and PhD studies”. Mr. Wang added that the planned International Education Conference in Beijing, that will take place from 17 to 20 October 2019, will attract 2000 delegates from 100 countries. He said that this conference will offer opportunities for participating countries to exhibit relevant Education specific information from their respective countries, to share information on Study Abroad opportunities for international students at universities in their respective countries.
He also recommended that DUT/CI should encourage KZN TVET Colleges Representatives to closely work with the excellent reputation of the Chinese TVET Colleges in order to provide greater incentives for TVET Colleges students to learn Mandarin, in advance of their Internship placements at businesses/factories in China. “Chinese Vocational Colleges are the Factory of the World.
Pictured: (L to R) Dr Lavern Samuels (Director: International Education& Partnerships), Mr Zhouu Yong (Counsellor of Cultural Affair: Chinese Embassy), Mr Wang Daoyu (First Secretary of Education: Chinese Embassy), Professor Thandwa Mthembu (Vice-Chancellor and Principal: Durban University of Technology), Professor Sibusiso Moyo (Deputy Vice- Chancellor: Research, Innovation and Engagement at the Durban University of Technology).
Mr Frank Lin Wu