Welcome Message from the President 

 

 Dr. Saloschini Pillay
 

Dear Colleagues

On behalf of the SAFSAS Conference Organizing Committee, I have great pleasure in welcoming you to the 2018 SAFSAS Summit, from 25th to 26th November 2018. It is our privilege to have you join us in the Kingdom of the Zulu, Durban, KwaZulu-Natal. The SAFSAS biennial summit is once again being coordinated by UKZN. Invited guests to the Summit are the national Minister of Education, the Honorable Minister Naledi Pandor, national Vice chancellors, Deans of Students, DVC’s Student Affairs, and all Student Affairs leadership.

The Southern African Federation for Student Affairs and Services (SAFSAS) was established on 25 October 2012 in Mangaung, Bloemfontein. The formation of this body was initiated by the Department of Higher Education and Training in September 2007, "to explore the feasibility of a single Higher Education Student Services Practitioner’s body and the establishment of a common understanding on quality student development and support." 

The launch of SAFSAS in Mangaung in 2012 is a historic event for Student Affairs and Services Associations and its practitioners. SAFSAS hopes to strengthen collaboration between stakeholders within the Higher and Further Education and Training sector, so as to enhance our contribution towards student support, development and success. 

The Summit provides a platform, where key role players will discuss the latest developments in student support and services, student life and the student experience. The conference will also provide hands on learning and the opportunity to network and discuss critical challenges affecting our students, and identify opportunities to engage in national dialogue on the way forward.

As Student Affairs Practitioners within the higher education sector we have first-hand knowledge of the contextual and environmental realities impacting our students and our services. Such realities impact access, retention and throughput in Higher Education. The establishing of the national federation, mooted by the department of Higher Education, affords us as Associations with membership from the various institutions nationally, the opportunity to work towards, consistent, coherent, equitable and professional student affairs and services that enhance the internal efficiency of higher education institutions as well as the holistic growth and development of our students. 

The main participants of SAFSAS are as follows, Association of College and University Housing Officers International- Southern African Chapter (ACUHO-I-SAC), National Association of Student Development Practitioners (NASDEV), Southern African Association for Counselling and Development in Higher Education (SAACDHE), South African Association of Campus Health Services (SAACHS), South African Association of Senior Student Affairs Professionals (SAASSAP), Financial Aid Practitioners of South Africa (FAPSA) and Higher and Further Education Disability Services Association (HEDSA) and the TVET’s.

We hope that the fruitful exchange of ideas and the forging of collaborative endeavours lead to forward looking strategies and solutions for Student Affairs and Services in Southern Africa. 

With Best Wishes
Dr Saloschini Pillay
Conference Chair: Southern African Federation for Student Affairs and Services
Executive Member: Southern African Association for Counselling and Development in Higher Education


Doc Nhassengo (DUT), Sibusiso Chalufu (UKZN), Saloschini Pillay (UKZN), Crain Soudien (UCT), Llewellyn MacMaster (US) and Laetitia Permall (UWC)