The US-SA Higher Education Network (US-SA HEN) was established to provide a vehicle for encouraging exchange and interaction between higher education institutions in South Africa and the United States. The Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET)’s University Capacity Development Programme (UCDP) US-SA Higher Education Network is an ongoing initiative in response to the needs in the South African higher education community (and in the world). The initiative advances strategies to facilitate growth of doctoral candidates in South Africa and creates exchange opportunities for faculty, staff and students in the collaborating institutions and institutions in both USA and SA. 

Participants at the US-SA HE Network strategic workshop in Pretoria

The strategic workshop took place on 03 December 2019 at the Graduate Centre, University of Pretoria. The session shared success made by the network, highlights of the projects funded under the network, impact of network outcomes to research, policy and practice on SDG implementation. The US-SA HEN strategic meeting focused on funding and sustainability for the network; redesigning university around the students; social impact; differentiation and articulation; the STEM and HDI partnerships. The Network discussed other possible funding through submission of proposals to funding agencies both nationally and internationally. Prof Ahmed Bawa, CEO USAf, Prof Jan Crafford, DVC (Academic) UNIVEN, Prof Kyle Farmbry, Rutgers University, Dr Whitty Green, Deputy Director General, DHET, Ms Tshembani Khupane, Technology and Innovation Agency (TIA), Mr Bheki Hadebe, Department of Technology and Innovation (DSI) representatives and many others were present at the workshop and they all gave their input. 

The US-SA HEN was established based on the needs of the research community. It has organically evolved over time. This network, as with other networks, such as the SA-UK, SA-Sweden, SA-Japan networks is critical for developing the SA Higher Education (HE) system, especially in terms of staff, teaching and programme development. It is important to ensure that there is flexibility in the system, and the partner institutions will drive the project at the operational level. This meeting is critical to map the way forward, grow the network and allow flexibility at all spheres. The department is fully committed to this network as well as other networks, especially on HDI development and strengthening. A meeting is scheduled with the 8 partner universities early in 2020 with the objective of mapping a way forward. 

Issued by : 

Department of Communications and Marketing 

University of Venda 

Tel : 015 962 8525 

Date : 07January 2020