Semester examinations currently underway
The June Examinations have begun in full swing in all 3 campuses of our university. On the 6th of June 2017, the starting day of exams, 2974 students wrote in Alice, 2260 wrote in East London and 142 wrote in Bhisho campus. This brought the total of students who wrote their exams just on day one to 5576. This exams cycle has had to begin a week later than originally planned due to a strike that had occurred earlier on in the year that affected mostly the East London campus. In spite of this, the catch-up plan organized by faculties did assist the students to catch up with the syllabus, even if not entirely.
An intern from the Registrar’s Office, Nobubele Gulwa, went around campus interviewing students just to get a sense of readiness of our students. Interviewed students in all 3 campuses expressed their stress because of low DPs; however, such pressure may positively push them to study harder in order to pass. Nthekeleng Mphomela, a BSc Agric level 1 student reported mixed feelings, that is, being excited and nervous at the same time. She said she is nervous because it is her first time to write university examinations and not knowing what to expect but excited at the prospect of success. In 3 years to come, she dreams of finishing her degree and continue to study as she wishes to obtain a doctorate someday.
Zozuko Mnqayi said, “I am scared but hope to pass as I have worked hard to be where I am today in terms of passing my matric and 1st semester tests”. She says her fear of exams gives her power to study hard as she wishes to become a Veterinary Surgeon one day. She is the first person at her home to be registered at university and wishes to finish her degree to provide for her family and become a role model to others. For her, university is very different compared to high school as in the latter, they were guided on everything but at varsity, you are forced to become independent. A lot of our UFH students are no different from Zozuko as they are 1st generation students. This puts added pressure on them to succeed because failing even for 1 year means 1 more year for the family to wait for support from the students’ income when that student becomes employed.
The interviewed students were in the company of their classmates (Esona Mlumbi, Lamla hlomendlini and Sibulele Mboniswa) for group study to prepare for the exams. In fact, evidence of such study groups is clear everywhere one looks in all campuses as students are busy ‘coughing’ (campus slang for group discussions).
This positive attitude of these and other students is very encouraging, and the Registrar, Prof. Somniso expressed his best wishes for these hardworking students of the University of Fort Hare during their exams and thanks his Examinations team in all their endevours in making this June examinations a success.
Writer: Nobubele Gulwa
Photographer: Sikelela Xakata