Training 2 update: Focusing on community engagement

The SUCSESS Training 2 focuses on inclusive development aspects in southern African university education and training. Prof Jarkko Saarinen (University of Oulu), Mr Hannes Engelbrecht (University of Pretoria) and Dr Hema Kesa (University of Johannesburg) are part of a sub-group that analyses and discusses universities’ actions in the surrounding society and communities for the benefit of the region and students. The key idea is community engagement:

The sub-group has three main tasks. First, the group outlines partner universities existing community engagement policies and strategies. Based on that the key projects will be identified in the Universities of Johannesburg, Pretoria and Zululand. Second, by analysing existing policy documents and conducting interviews for the identified project coordinators, SWOT analyses of selected engagement projects are processed and synthesised into a learning document. Finally, the group aims to make an implementation plan for teaching. This will be based on the previous tasks and by identifying best practices in different universities and describing lessons learned.

All the partner universities in South Africa have community engagement policies that support inclusive development and community projects. The University of Pretoria, for example, has seven core principles of community engagement: