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05 December 2023 Photo Francois van Vuuren
MACE Awards Winners 2023
From left are: Belinda Janeke, Head: Career Services; Barend Nagel, Multimedia Specialist, Department of Communication and Marketing; Moeketsi Mogotsi, Social Media Specialist, Department of Communication and Marketing; Lacea Loader, Senior Director: Department of Communication and Marketing; Tobias van den Bergh, Counselling Psychologist, Student Counselling and Development; Mojalefa Rabolinyane, Assistant Officer, Student Counselling and Development; Burneline Kaars, Head: Leadership, Organisational Development and Employee Well-being; Lizet Holtzhausen, Officer, Leadership, Organisational Development and Employee Well-being; Marieta Landman, Senior Officer, Department of Student Recruitment Services; and Sandile Ncedani, Senior Officer, Department of Student Recruitment Services.

On 16 November 2023, five departments at the University of the Free State made a big splash at the national association for Marketing, Advancement, and Communication in Education (MACE) 2023 Excellence Awards.

Collectively, the UFS won 11 awards, including the sought-after Chairperson’s Award of Excellence, awarded to a single entry that embodies true excellence in marketing, advancement, or communication. In other words, the overall winner across all divisions and categories.

Celebrating the best in marketing, advancement, and communication

Hosted annually, the MACE Excellence Awards recognise and celebrate the excellence of specialists and practitioners in marketing, advancement, and communication in the higher-education sector. MACE plays a vital role in adding value to practitioners through high-quality development programmes, facilitating networking partnerships and transformation, as well as promoting best practices among these professions at member institutions.

The MACE National Conference held on the Belville Campus of the University of the Western Cape from 15 to 16 November 2023, preceded the glamorous awards function. The theme for the conference was ‘Higher education institutions in a world of artificial intelligence’. After two informative days, delegates attended the awards function, where their work and skills were recognised.

The winner takes it all

The UFS Leadership, Organisational Development, and Employee Well-Being won the Chairperson’s Award for its Women’s Day Breakfast. This memorable event also received a platinum award. Silver awards were raked in by Student Counselling and Development (DoDay Mental Health Campaign), Career Services (Careers Podcast Series), Student Recruitment Services (Motion Graphics Video), and the Department of Communication and Marketing (DCM) won three silver awards for its Social Media Squad project, the Vision 130 video, and the Dr Maye Musk Honorary Doctorate Graduation Ceremony. Bronze awards were given to DCM for the Vision 130 Launch and Youth Month, and the Kovsie Connect Virtual Experience won Student Recruitment Services its second award of the evening.

Excellence in everything we do

Lacea Loader, Senior Director: Communication and Marketing and Coordinator of the MACE Excellence Awards, says the recognition affirms the high level of communication generated by the institution. “I am immensely proud of the national recognition from our peers for the quality and innovative work we do. This year in particular, different departments entered the awards programme, which is exemplary of the integration and synergy of the work done in the different departments,” she says.

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