WITS School of Art students have expressed their discontent over the choices of degrees offered by the school.
At a meeting held at the Wits Art Museum on Tuesday, a number of the students said there was gap between the practical and theoretical components of their coursework. This was especially true for second-year students who must choose between theoretical or practical courses.
One student at the meeting said this was a problem because many students entering their second year did not know whether they wanted to pursue theoretical or practical coursework. The problem continued into third year, which the student complained had little connection to the previous year’s coursework.
Students must get more involved
The meeting for arts students was held to elect a new student council and discuss issues and concerns with their programme.
“As the student council going forward, we must really work on influencing policy-making in terms of everything – in terms of spacing, in terms of practicalities, before the university makes decisions to shut down theatres … they must find out first what is happening with the students,” said newly elected council chairperson Obett Motaung.
The students criticised what they said was a lack of visibility for events related to the arts and engagement with the Faculty of Humanities.
The arts students also loudly criticised a lack of social interaction within their school. “FUCT Fridays”, an arts initiative to raise funds for projects, used to be held on the rooftop of the school’s building. “But that’s just disappeared,” one student complained. “There are no fundraisers, nothing that’s happening and I think there we see that there is a gap that we might as well try and fill.”
2014/15 Wits School of Arts Student Council
Obett Motaung, chairperson
Lucky Mqobeli, vice- chairperson
Masechaba Phakela, secretary general
Bonnie Maphutse, deputy secretary general
Jessica Janse van Rensburg, treasurer general
Jòvan Muthray, projects and campaigns officer
Sarah Nansubuga, academic and transformation officer