Wits hockey’s ‘Harlem Shake’ one of the best

The Wits hockey team’s version of the popular Harlem Shake has been named as a favourite of a prominent talk-show host.

Talk radio 702’s Jenny Crwys Williams has named the hockey team’s Harlem Shake as her favourite.

The underwater hockey team had to tread water in their formal gear for about twenty seconds at a time, in order to execute the video.

Team member Nick Quarta had suggested the idea to the team. On hearing the news that 702 had mentioned the team, the chairperson of the team, Vicky Stock was ecstatic.

“We were all very excited, I received a message from a friend telling me he’d just heard that 702 had mentioned our Harlem Shake. We never thought it would ever get that far so it was really cool news,” Stock said. Stock added, “the sport is still growing in South Africa and we were all amped that the Harlem Shake got out there to expose it!”

The ‘Harlem shake’ has evolved into an internet meme that has gone viral on multiple social media platforms. The meme is in the medium of  video. The video consists of people who perform a dance to the song ‘Harlem shake’ by Baauer.

The first ‘Harlem shake’ was uploaded on February 2, 2013 by a group of students from Australia. The video was modelled from a video that was made by online blogger Filthy Frank.

The formula of executing the Harlem Shake involves making a video that is approximately 30 seconds long.

The video usually begins with one individual who dances to the song amongst a group of inattentive individuals. The bass of the song drops after about 15 seconds which results in the inattentive crowd dancing along with the individual in an enthusiastic manner.

The  ‘Harlem shake’ concept has been used politically in Egypt, Tunisia and in the United States of America.




Witsies dominate accountancy test

Wits students dominated an annual competency test for accountants by obtaining 5 of the 10 highest results nationally.


The students participated in the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA) ‘Initial Test of Competence” (ITC) on Wednesday.


The test is written yearly as a prerequisite for all prospective Chartered Accountants. SAICA is widely recognised as one of the world’s leading accounting institutes and provides support services to more that 34 000 members who are Chartered Accountants and hold positions as CEOs, MDs, board directors, business owners, chief financial officers, auditors and leaders in their spheres of business operation.


Mandi Olivier, SAICA’s Senior Executive: Professional Development said in a media release:  “Most of these members operate in commerce and industry, and play a significant role in the nation’s highly dynamic business sector and economic development.”


This year the results show that 73% of the 3117 candidates who wrote the test passe, a score that has increased by 14% from last year.


Olivier said: “There continues to be a good growth in the number of African candidates writing the ITC with their proportion of the exam population increasing from 27% to 30% (933 candidates), the majority being first timers.


The Wits SRC caused some controversy on Thursday when they congratulated the top Wits students by tweeting: “#SAICABoardExams The top five are Wits students. Well done Witsies!!”


This tweet caused outrage amongst students as it was in fact incorrect.  Although five students made it into the top ten, they were not all part of the top five.


The SRC later apologized for the error.


The top ten results are as follows:


1. Shaun Brett Croock; University of Johannesburg

2. Gordon Bradley; University of Witwatersrand

3. Jithen Vadival Pillay; University of Cape Town

4. Muhammed Munshi; University of Witwatersrand

5. Steven Marc Hurwitz; University of Witwatersrand

6. Gene Amor Samuels; University of Cape Town

7. Johann Steyn; university of Johannesburg

8. Christopher Eric Guattari- Stafford; University of Cape Town

9. Martin Lawrence Richman; University of Witwatersrand

10. Kishan Govan; University of Witwatersrand

SANDF offers graduates recruitment opportunities at the Randshow

By Palesa Radebeedited

The South African National Defence Force (SANDF) wants to attract the youth to the military, with their exhibition at the annual Rand show.

According to Captain Prince Tshabalala, the senior staff media Liaison at SANDF, the indoor and outdoor exhibition at the Randshow will be used as a platform to “focus on communicating the role of the national defence force and will have a number of displays showing casing military capabilities”

SANDF at a media briefing illustrated their plans to have a line-up of vehicles, aircraft and military displays and exhibits. Tshabalala said everyone interested in the defence force will get exposed to the Air force, Navy, Army and the South African Military service.

Tshabalala added the exhibition was SANDF way of presenting the various career opportunities available to matriculates, job seekers and graduates.

Major Ntsiki Mantshongo who works in the defence corporate communication department said,

“Graduates and students who are interested in the defence force should be age between 18 and 22, and should have obtained a good mark in mathematics and science in grade 12”.

Mantshong said the force is also interested in students at universities who have graduated from a variety of faculties. Though the force will be recruiting graduates for variety of faculties, they do have a preference for technical and engineering students.

“The force has a university reserved training program for students studying towards Engineering or any technical subjects. They will get offered contracts to finish their studies and pay it off by working for the Force.”

“For those interested in the Pilot training program the Air force will also be recruiting students that have maths and science level 5 and who don’t have phobias.” He said.

The exhibition will be held at the Randshow from the March 28 till the first of April.



Accountants get a new jobs portal

A new career management portal was launched in Johannesburg today with the intention of matchmaking graduates with prospective employers.

The South African Institute of Chartered Accountants SAICA launched their new jobs portal in the hope that the platform will address the difficulties people experience in finding work and managing their careers in today’s tough economic circumstances. CEO Matsobane Matlwa says he hopes the facility will help bring qualified jobs seekers and businesses who seek skills together.

Career Suite is an online career and talent management platform for accounting and finance professionals and graduates.  SAICA’s Chief Information Officer Rakesh Beekum explained that subscription to Career Suite is free, and open to all accounting, audit, tax and finance professionals participating in all levels of finance and business whether they are SAICA members or not.

Beekum explained “Once you’ve registered with a Career Suite profile, you will have access to a range of career development tools.” Graduates will be able to access articles and videos on managing their career, managing talent effectively and managing their performance. They will also be able to access mentors and coaches through the portal as well as conduct competency and psychometric assessments.

The portal offers graduates the opportunity to make the maximum impact on potential employers by not only being able to upload a detailed CV but also a photo and  video. According to Beekum the portal will teach graduates how to sell themselves in 30 seconds. He said “We’ve also thought of making CV’s sexier with the formats and themes we’ve made available.”

The Career Suite portal will be available in mobile format with an application you can download on iPhone and Android operating smart phones.  An application for BlackBerry is not yet available but according to Beekum SAICA this should be available sometime in the near future.


Barnato residents want compensation for rotten food

Barnato residents signing for meal vouchers

Barnato residents sign for meal vouchers during the power outages. Photo: Emelia Motsai

Witsies staying in Barnato Hall want the university to pay for groceries they lost during recent power cuts.

The self-catering residents want compensation for the groceries and for the money they had to spend on take-aways because of the power outages in the residence.

“We didn’t expect that we would be living without electricity. We ordinarily cook not buy take-aways,” said Barnato resident Godfrey Maja

The outage happened from 15-18 March. “They literally left us to fend for ourselves for two days,” said Barnato House Committee member Tafadzwa Chagonda

“The power cut came right after I’d just brought my groceries. To watch them rot like that was sad,” said self catering resident Tshegofalo Seile.

The students said that they should be reimbursed a standard amount.

“We all get a standard amount after they have determined how much everyone lost,” said Ndumiso Duma

The WitsSRC tweeted that it is “coming from a place that says Wits University management must own up and reimburse Barnies for rotten food etc.”

Michael Kunyeto-Lambert, chairperson of the Barnato House Committee said “residence life office said it is open to negotiations but they have not told us how or when. We are concerned about how long it will take.”

Rob Sharman the Director of Campus Housing and Residence Life said that he will “engage with senior management regarding compensation for the losses incurred during the power outage.”

The residence is now running on generator power.

According to a representative of Property and Infrastructure Management Division (PIMD), a waste pipe was leaking and the water seeped into the substation causing an electrical explosion: “If everything goes well Eskom power should be restored by Thursday evening.”

WITS NEWS: Lecture on ‘Dust, Disease and Politics on South Africa’s Gold Mines’

 NOTE: The following information is reproduced from the Wits News newsletter (wits.news@wits.ac.za)


 The Wits Faculty of Health and the Adler Museum of Medicine host the annual AJ Orenstein Memorial Lecture to be presented by Prof Jock McCulloch, Professor in the School of Global, Urban and Social Studies, RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia.

His lecture is titled Dust, Disease and Politics on South Africa’s Gold Mines and will focus on how an illusion of safety on South African mines was created and perpetuated.


Date: 10 April 2013

Time: 18:00

Venue: Auditorium, Wits School of Public Health, Parktown

Enquiries: adler.museum@wits.ac.za or (011) 717-2067

WITS NEWS: SWOP breakfast seminars on Marikana

NOTE: The following information is reproduced from the Wits News newsletter (wits.news@wits.ac.za)


The Society, Work and Development Institute (SWOP) will convene a series of breakfast seminars that engage with different aspects of the Marikana Moment. Presenting on-going research by SWOP, the seminars will consider the increasing turbulence on the platinum belt, in the realms of business, community and labour respectively, as well as the intensification of intra-elite violence at a political level.


Strike Violence Post-apartheid: Cases from Marikana and the 2012 Platinum Strike-Wave presented by Chrispen Chinguno, PhD Fellow (SWOP)

Date: 12 April 2013

Time: 07:30

Venue: Hofmeyr House, East Campus


Intra-elite Violence: Causes, Forms, Prospects presented by Prof. Karl von Holdt, Director: SWOP

Date: 10 May 2013

Time: 07:30

Venue: Hofmeyr House, East Campus

For more information and to RSVP, contact shameen.govender@wits.ac.za or (011) 717-4460

WSOA alumni call for responsibility in sexual harassment drama

A group of School of Dramatic Arts alumni has written an open letter to Wits University to voice their opinion about the recent sexual harassment allegations against a senior lecturer in the school.

This is after the Sunday Times labeled drama lecturer, Tsepo wa Mamatu a “sex pest” and reported that he was accused of sexually assaulting some of his students.

In the letter the group of alumni expressed their dismay over “an apparent climate … within the University that condones and what’s more appears actively to facilitate such sexual transgressions.”

According to the letter which was sent via Adrian Galley, their outrage over the matter is due to their own experience of an environment which was tolerant of sexual misconduct 30 years ago and seems to still exist.

The group said that the campus-wide inquiry into sexual harassment is “too little, too late and offers slight comfort to survivors,” and they suspect the inquiry is driven by “a need to shore-up the University’s legal defenses,” rather than a “sincere desire for truth and justice”.

The group calls for authorities to “question why they have abandoned their quest for social justice and remind them the moral high ground they may once have claimed has long been overrun by corrupt and hostile forces”.

The groups wants lecturers in the drama department to “reflect on and take responsibility for their own complicity in the current chain of events” and they “challenge the University administration” to take steps towards “social justice”.

The alumni said that it is unfortunate that some groups see the “call for swift justice” as a plan to incite a “witch hunt and the institution of a kangaroo-court”.

But they believe “environment of social justice serves equally the interests of genuine complainants and the falsely accused”.

The former Witsies called upon the university administration to act decisively. They said they “wish to once again be associated with an institution that is universally recognised as a leading and credible voice on issues of social justice, making a positive contribution to the national and international debate on matters of sexual abuse and gender-based violence.”

Read the full text of the open letter here.

WITS NEWS: Seminar on climate change and sustainability

The following information is reproduced from the Wits News newsletter (wits.news@wits.ac.za)
“The Erasmus Mundus project LEAN-CC (Linking European, African and Asian Academic Networks on Climate Change), addresses the promotion of research and education exchange in the field of climate change. The promotional seminar at Wits aims to improve awareness of the issues relating to climate change and the available EU courses and programmes, reduce barriers to studying in the EU, provide prospective non-EU students with information, and provide a platform and a basis for collaboration and mobility between European, African and Asian Academic Networks in the field of climate change education and research.
The seminar is open to experts and students in climate change as a multidimensional issue, including the science, policy, and education in academia as well as the general public, private, and community sectors. Invited talks will provide a deeper understanding of the different facets of climate change and contribute to a more informed and dynamic discussion in several breakout groups.
The seminar takes place from 3 to 5 April 2013 at the Professional Development Hub, Wits University.
Students at all levels interested in studying climate change are invited to participate. Students are invited to present posters featuring their work related to climate change and sustainability. Cash prices will be awarded to the three best posters.
Pre-registration is required by 25 March 2013. Deadline for poster abstract submission is 22 March 2013. For details on the seminar, registration and abstract submission, see http://www.gcsri.org/workshops/2013_LEAN_CC

WITS NEWS: Systems unavailable this weekend (23 March onwards)

The following information is reproduced from the Wits News newsletter (wits.news@wits.ac.za)
“Please note that the SIMS, iWits and BI systems will be unavailable on Saturday, 23 March 2013, from 07:00 until 06:00 on Monday, 25 March 2013 for maintenance.
The systems affected during this maintenance period include:
• iRecruitment
• iWits Finance and HR system
• Online Applications
All other systems will be functional. Please note that systems may be brought online as the maintenance work completes earlier than planned. If you have any queries or concerns, please contact ithelp@wits.ac.za or (011) 717-1717.”

SLLM engages students on sexual harassment

SLLM SEXUAL HARASSMENT COMMITTEE: Prof Pumla Gqola, Prof Tomasso Milani, Dr Mehita Iqani and Dr Colette Gordon. Photo: Pheladi Sethusa

SEXUAL HARASMENT COMMITTEE: Prof Pumla Gqola, Prof Tomasso Milani, Dr Mehita Iqani and Dr Colette Gordon. Photo: Pheladi Sethusa

Only a handful of students attended the open meeting held by the School of Literature, Languages and Media (SLLM) this past Monday.

The school has formed a sexual harassment committee consisting of school staff members Dr Mehita Iqani, Prof Pumla Gqola, Dr Colette Gordon and Prof Tommaso Milani.

At the meeting the committee members handed out their personal contact details so that students could feel free to speak to them discretely about sexual harassment. In addition the committee handed out pamphlets which included the information of relevent university structures dealing with sexual harassment issues.

Dr Iqani got the meeting going by saying that the committee were available to answer questions and give advice to students on sexual harassment issues. “We want to hear students’ views and opinions,” she added.The idea behind the meeting was to get students from the school to come together in a safe environment, so that they would feel free to talk about sexual harassment.

There were concerns about the impact of student views and opinions around the issue of sexual harassment.  Prof Gqola reaffirmed the committee’s commitment to engage with students. “We want you to have a say – a direct one,” answered Gqola.  The committee guaranteed that testimonies would be confidential and that no student would be punished for ever coming forward with information.

Some of the suggestions made by the students include:

  •  That both parties in any sexual harassment allegation need to be represented equally. The committee indicated that this can never be guaranteed because a reply from an alleged harasser for example is a matter of choice.
  • Another student suggested that the school should look into creating a student council so that victims could talk to people they feel very comfortable with. The response to this suggestion stated that such a committee was already under construction.
  • A running commentary from the floor was that the school had indeed taken a very positive step towards the sexual harassment issue by forming this committee.

A code of conduct is being drawn up by the school as a way of ensuring that everyone in the school knows what their rights and responsibilities are.

To close off the meeting the committee reiterated that they are in no position to action against perpetrators. Dr Gordon said: “It’s not about removing people, it’s about removing behaviours.”