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The Durban University of Technology (DUT) made history once again as it unveiled the ENVISION2030 DNA double helix monument and sealed the ENVISION2030 Time Capsule at the Indumiso campus in Pietermaritzburg on Wednesday, 19 October 2022. This prestigious hybrid event was also available online , via the DUT website: this Wednesday.

Senior Director of Corporate Affairs at DUT, Mr Alan Khan, DUT Midlands Campus Director, Dr Joe Molete, DUT Vice-Chancellor and Principal, Professor Thandwa Mthembu, DUT Deputy Chair of Council, Mrs Brenda Ntombela and Umsunduzi Local Municipality Mayor, Mr Mzimkhulu Thebolla celebrating as the ENVISION2030 double helix monument was unveiled at Indumiso campus.

At the Indumiso campus, DUT once again revealed its new tagline: Creative, Distinctive and Impactful, however, this was the first time that the tagline was revealed in person to the Midlands campus community. This tagline emphasizes the key attributes of DUT’s ENVISION2030. A DUT DNA double helix monument, which was inspired by the DUT DNA as detailed on the ENVISION2030 strategy map, was also unveiled on the day. This monument symbolises the institutional identity, character, behaviour and culture.

Prof Motaung and Prof Singh diligently facilitated the reveal of the new Tag Line, explaining the reasoning behind DUT choosing the words Creative, Distinctive and Impactful as its new tagline and how these words are aligned to ENVISION2030.

Unpacking ENVISION2030 was Mrs Lorna McCullough, Senior Lecturer at the Department of Applied Management at DUT Midlands. Her aim was to simplify the ENVISION2030 strategy map to ensure that the students and staff have a better understanding of the ENVISION2030.

The Midlands campus community witnessed the Vice-Chancellor and Principal, Professor Thandwa Mthembu, entombing a letter in a time capsule, which is addressed to the person who will be the Vice-Chancellor and Principal of DUT in 2031, the expected period for the unsealing of the time capsule.

In this 14-page letter, Prof Mthembu has taken his time to thoroughly explain the objectives of the ENVISION2030 strategy, starting by indicating that by 2030, DUT hopes to see the ENVISION2030 statement of intent come to life.

Prof Mthembu further explains in the letter, the design of the DUT DNA monument, which was unveiled at the event, stating that at the heart of the DUT DNA are two intertwined strands, namely ‘people-centred and engaged’ and ‘innovative and entrepreneurial’ – both bound together by shared ‘values and principles’ that the University committed to embed and to live.

In addition, Prof Mthembu proudly shared numerous DUT accolades from the time he joined the university in 2016. The Vice-Chancellor and Principal hopes that in 2031, when the time capsule is unsealed and his message from the past is received, DUT would be in a position to celebrate the achievements of the ENVISION2030 strategy.

Delivering his address at the event, Prof Mthembu stated that there is a need for graduates that will be adaptive, distinctive, impactful and that will have the ability to influence or initiate change rather than destroying the society.

“I would like to encourage our newly elected Student Representative Council (SRC) to lead towards finding that new legacy that is not about violence but taking the society forward,” he said.

Prof Mthembu also explained that there are different types of democracy and the University encourages deliberative democracy which is democracy that is about ideas from different people and exchange of ideas, then build from one idea in order to come out with the best idea.

Two artists, Bandile Shezi and Siboniso Xolo from the Bellhaven Harm Reduction Centre which partners with the Urban Futures Centre at DUT, entertained the guests with their ENVISION2030 original rap song that they recently wrote. These two talented young men left the crowd, excited about being part of the ENVISION2030.

Sharing the ENVISION2030 excitement was the DUT Deputy Chair of Council, Mrs Brenda Ntombela, who passed on her congratulatory message to the DUT community on hosting this momentous event.

DUT Registrar, Dr Maditsane Nkonoane who also celebrated his birthday on the day delivered the vote of thanks, expressing his gratitude to all the dignitaries for availing themselves for this event. He also thanked the DUT staff and students for making the event a huge success.

“Thank you to the Deputy Chair of the DUT Council leadership, Mrs Brenda Ntombela for taking time off your very busy schedule to travel to Durban to celebrate this very special occasion with the DUT family. A big thank you to Prof Mthembu, Vice-Chancellor and Principal for his leadership towards our shared destiny through ENVISION2030. I must mention our deep sense of appreciation to the ENVISION2030 Task Team for the long hours you spent as a team formulating ENVISION2030, implementing and as well the tracking that will be managed over the next couple of years. It remains my fervent belief that we will bequeath a better DUT to those that will come after us,” concluded Dr Nkonoane.

Pictured: Mrs Lorna McCullough, Senior Lecturer at the Department of Applied Management at DUT Midlands, Dr Vuyo Mthethwa, Deputy Vice-Chancellor: People and Operations at DUT, Professor Thandwa Mthembu, DUT Vice-Chancellor and Principal, Mrs Brenda Ntombela, DUT Deputy Chair of Council, Prof Keolebogile Motaung, Acting Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Research, Innovation and Engagement at DUT, Mr Mzimkhulu Thebolla, Umsunduzi Local Municipality Mayor, Dr Maditsane Nkonoane, DUT Registrar, Dr Joe Molete, DUT Midlands Campus Director and Prof Suren Singh, Acting Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Teaching and Learning at DUT at the unveiling of the ENVISION2030 DNA double helix monument at Indumiso campus.

This article is available in South African Sign Language. Please click on the following link to access the South African Sign Language translation:

Photographer: Vusi Dlamini.

Simangele Zuma and Zanele Mashaba

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