The start of a new year brings a new flock of prospective first year students to the Potchefstroom Campus of the North West University (NWU PUK). The Reception and Introduction program (R&I), known better on campus by its Afrikaans abbreviation O&B, kicked off this past Saturday with a formal welcoming in the campus’s amphitheater. The amphitheater cannot hold the vast amount of people that attend the opening so the proceedings are broadcast live into the Sanlam Auditorium, Sport Center, Alumni Hall and cafeteria.
During the welcoming speeches, Dr Theuns Eloff, the Vice-chancellor of the university, boasted about the university’s academic achievements and that fact that the North West University is 2nd largest university in South Africa and has been awarded the best governed university in South Africa numerous times. Eloff also revealed that the university’s undergraduate pass rate is 85%, which is well above the national average of mid 70′s for other universities. Eloff also took the opportunity to express concern about the quality and value of the National Senior Certificate given that the standards for passing have been declining over the past years. For the 2014 academic year, the NWU PUK received over 10 000 applications but only 5 000 applications were accepted.
The campus’s rector, Prof. Herman van Schalkwyk was greeted by Pukki, the PUK’s mascot, while the PUK’s theme song, Kyk net hoe baie Pukke is ons hier played in the background.
Pukki handed Prof. Herman a puk (pick) with the engraving of Een mal ‘n NWU PUK, altyd ‘n NWU PUK! (Once a NWU PUK, always a NWU PUK!). Once the amphitheater proceedings were finished, students along with their parents departed to various venues around the campus to hear the welcoming speeches of the faculties they were enrolled in.
WATCH: Day 1 highlights of the NWU PUK O&B 2014.
Later in the afternoon, students assembled at their various residences to prepare for the evening session in the amphitheater.