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26 March 2018 Photo Pixabay
Back to the drawing board to save water
We’ve managed to damage nature’s ‘filter’ with air, ocean, and soil pollution, and by destroying wetlands.

Dr Cindé Greyling, a University of the Free State (UFS) DiMTEC (Disaster Management Training and Education Centre for Africa) alumni, studied drought mitigation with a strong focus on communicating important water-saving information. 

Can we run out of water?
Yes, and no, says Dr Greyling. “To our knowledge, water is not ‘leaking’ through our atmosphere. We have what we have, but that doesn’t mean we will have enough clean, fresh water forever. Nature has a magnificent way of purifying water through the water cycle. We, on the other hand, must use a lot of money and energy to purify water. Also, we’ve managed to damage nature’s ‘filter’ with air, ocean, and soil pollution, and by destroying wetlands. The other problem is a simple supply and demand scenario. More people will need more water, but not only that, population growth calls for industry development and increased food supplies – all of which require more water.”    

A war over water
Besides some Hollywood impressions, it is difficult to imagine a war over water, but it is possible. “Some experts are convinced that we are heading there, and others claim that such tensions already exist. Personally, I don’t favour these kinds of shock tactics (or truths) – social research has shown us that it rarely leads to behavioural changes. We can learn a lot from what was has been done in Cape Town. Although we all think people were bombarded with ‘Day-Zero’-scares, they were actually encouraged to adapt their behaviour with a communication campaign that hardly ever used the term ‘Day-Zero’. This approach mobilised citizens to reach record lows of water usage.” 

Adapt a new normal
Dr Greyling encourages the “new normal” set in motion by Capetonians. “Water consciousness is needed, even when the rain comes again. We’ve taken water for granted for too long. As consumers, we have the power to turn this situation around – drop for drop. Be aware about the amount of water you use, how you use it, and for what. Keep in mind that any wastage and pollution (of ‘dry’ things) also wastes and pollutes water. Generally, we need to behave better regarding consumption.”  

News Archive

Achieve academic goals with an online presence
2016-11-02

Description: Academic Reboot Pack 2.0    Tags: Academic Reboot Pack 2.0

The Academic Reboot Pack 2.0 of the
University of the Free State introduces
an online academic approach to help
students complete the 2016 academic
year.
Photo: iStock

With the recent break in the academic activities at most of the countries’ universities, higher education managers are pressured to come up with ways of completing the rest of the 2016 academic year.

An approach introduced by the University of the Free State (UFS), is the use of online learning platforms.

For the remainder of the year, students will be required to do the majority of their work online. To support students during this time, the UFS has created an Academic Reboot Pack 2.0, which included #8 Habits of Highly successful online students.  

Stay informed and prioritise your work

Make the online environment the top priority in your daily schedules. Be extra vigilant in your studies and use online learning platforms such as Blackboard to check your modules for new announcements and academic information.

You will also need to prioritise between important and less important tasks. This will give you an indication as to which tasks to focus on first.

Optimise your environment and work until you achieve goals

You need to optimise your study environment in a space where you can be productive and study efficiently. Continue working until you have achieved your goals, but also remember to reward yourself when you have reached them.

Staying organised

Remember, you need to stay organised and declutter your environment. It will be best to create a filing system for your paper-based notes, as well as the electronic files on your computer.

Get study buddies and keep a healthy body and mind

Get study buddies as this provides a good opportunity to share knowledge. If you are not sure about something, contact your lecturers via email or on their office numbers.

Lastly, keep a healthy body and mind because you will need to keep going a little longer than anticipated this year.

Get your copy of the Academic Reboot Pack 2.0 on Blackboard under announcements or click here to download it.

 Also see the first Academic Reboot Pack.

If students have any question or queries regarding the Academic Reboot Pack 2.0, they can send an email to: advising@ufs.ac.za

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