Prof Tinyiko Maluleke, Vice-Chancellor and Principal.
We do not know how many rivers you crossed on your way to the Tshwane University of Technology. We do not know how many mountains you scaled; we do not know how steep the valleys have been. We do not know which road, railway or pathway led you here.
Maybe you are the first in your family to make it into university, but we know that you will not be the last.
Maybe your parents took a bank loan in order to pay for your first year at school. Maybe your parents had to sell some cattle to pay for your university education. Perhaps you and your parents rely on the National Student Finance Aid Scheme. Maybe you get by with a little help from Good Samaritans.
You know the costly sacrifices, you know the tears, you know the expectations and you know the hopes that have been invested in you. For our part, we wish to say to you, whichever part of the country, continent, or the world you come from, whatever your personal circumstances; it is not by chance, not by accident and it is not by luck that you have ended up at the Tshwane University of Technology. What brought you here, is your dogged determination and your hunger for knowledge that works.
To the first-year students in particular, I wish to say: Welcome to the People’s University; a University that prepares you for the future, the future of work. If you put in the necessary hard work, the Tshwane University of Technology will enable you to acquire the skills you need to do, and to invent, the jobs of the future.
Now that you are here, the real work must begin. Now you must prove to your parents, to the Tshwane University of Technology and to the nation at large, that you deserve to be counted amongst the talented million young people who are pursuing university education in South Africa at this time.
As we kick off this brand-new academic year, we urge you to promise yourself that you will not waste a day and you will not ruin a week; that you will not lose a month and you will not squander a semester. It has been proven again and again that only those students who work purposefully, constantly, and consistently are able to succeed in their studies at the Tshwane University of Technology.
We know each and every one of you has the talent, but now you must prove first to yourself and to everyone who cares about you, that you also have the required discipline. We know you are good, but now that you are here, good is no longer good enough; now is the time to move from good to great.
Whether this is your first, second or final year; the beginning of every academic year unveils a fresh opportunity for you to advance in your journey to the future, your journey to the future of work. And so, we say to you all, welcome to our Pretoria city campuses, rea le amogela ko Rankuwa, ha mi amukela eSoshanguve, siya n’amkela eMalahleni , ria vha tanganedza Polokwane, Bienvenu à Mbombela, karibu nyumbani.
Welcome to your future, welcome to the future of work. Welcome to the 2023 academic year. Welcome to the Tshwane University of Technology.