An assessment of the recruitment, diversity strategies and initiatives used to promote and retain undergraduate students : the case study of Stellenbosch University

Siebritz, Ubenicia (2012-12)

Thesis (MPA)--Stellenbosch University, 2012.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: For the past five years, Stellenbosch University (hereafter SU) has worked attentively to improve the diversity profiles of its staff and students, as well as the campus climate. In this regard, as at many other institutions, SU has worked in various ways to promote diversity. To this end, SU has not only invested in a variety of strategies and initiatives to address inequalities that exist in the education system, but has implemented their strategies and initiatives to assist with the diversification of the campus environment. Supplementary to these strategies and initiatives, staff, students, faculties and departments substantially support the institutional climate for diversity by supporting the various approaches and initiatives. In the twenty-first century, higher education institutions are obligated to make numerous changes in their recruitment, retention and study programmes to succeed in having a more diverse learning environment. This thesis discusses diversity at SU and how the institution, as a community, can work together to make the campus a more welcoming place for everyone. The purpose of the study was to determine the success of the diversity strategies and initiatives used by SU to promote their student diversity profile as it relates to students’ perceptions and experiences of the campus. The data confirms differences in opinions and perceptions in demographics such as race, culture, ethnicity and religion/beliefs. The researcher has also found a relationship between campus climate and the perceptions that students and staff may have. The findings presented in this study enhance the body of knowledge in the areas of student recruitment and retention strategies and initiatives, as well as student participation, student progress and campus climate. Even though the study is limited to one institution, this report provides institutions with a better understanding of student/staff involvement, their backgrounds and the campus climate as these aspects relate to the staff and students’ perceptions of the institutional commitment to diversity.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die Universiteit Stellenbosch (US) het vir die afgelope vyf jaar aandagtig gewerk aan die diversiteitsprofiel van beide studente en personeellede, sowel as aan die klimaat op kampus. In hierdie opsig het die US, soos ander hoëronderwysinstellings, op verskeie maniere gewerk om diversiteit te bevorder. Die US het nie net belê in ’n verskeidenheid strategieë en insiatiewe om die ongelykhede wat in die onderwyssisteem bestaan, aan te spreek nie, maar het ook hierdie strategieë en inisiatiewe geimplimenteer om diversifikasie van die kampusomgewing aan te moedig. Bykomend tot die strategieë en inisiatiewe het studente, personeellede, fakulteite en departemente ongelooflike bydraes gemaak tot die institusionele klimaat van diversiteit deur verskeie benaderings en insiatiewe te ondersteun. In die een-en-twintigste eeu het dit toenemend belangrik geword vir hoëronderwysinstellings om veranderinge te maak in werwing, behoud en studieprogramme ten einde `n meer diverse leeromgewing te bewerkstellig. Hierdie tesis bespreek diversiteit in die hoër onderwys en hoe die US as gemeenskap saam kan werk om die instelling `n meer verwelkomende kampus vir almal te maak. Die doel van hierdie studie was om die sukses van die diversiteitstrategieë en insiatiewe wat deur die US vir die bevordering van die studente diversiteitsprofiel gebruik is ten opsigte van studente se persepsies en ervarings van die kampus te assesseer. Die resultate bevestig verskillende opinies en persepsies oor demografiese aspekte soos ras, kultuur, etnitisiteit en godsdiens/geloof. Die navorser het ook `n verhouding bepaal tussen die kampusklimaat en die persepsies van studente en personeellede. Die bevindinge wat hierdie studie aanbied, dra by tot die geheel van kennis in die areas van strategieë en insiatiewe om studente te werf en te behou, sowel as studentedeelname, studentevordering en kampusklimaat. Hoewel die studie tot een instelling beperk is, voorsien hierdie verslag instellings van `n beter begrip oor studente/personeelbetrokkenheid, hulle agtergrond en die kampusklimaat in terme van hoe hierdie aspekte verband hou met die studente en personeel se waarnemings van die institusionele verbintenis tot diversiteit.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/71725
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