Open Day is an annual event in the universities calendar whereby learners from various high schools, teachers and parents across the country get an opportunity to visit and explore their children’s universities of choice, learn about the programmes offered, speak face to face with lecturers and current students, participate in activities of the day and have lots of fun. Open Day provides an insight into what the university life is like, it informs and inspires learners, shapes their future and helps in giving them the ‘Will’ power.
Central University of Technology, Free State (CUT) hosted a successful Open Day on 26 April with the biggest turn out ever in the history of the event. A total of 28 Schools from Bloemfontein, Kimberley, Kroonstad, Welkom, Virginia, Ondendaalsrus, Botshabelo, Thaba Nchu, Prieska and individual learners from schools in Durban teemed to both campuses to be part of the day and to experience the real look and feel of CUT and what they will be exposed to post matric. Except for the purpose of recruitment on the day, the university also opened its doors to the general public.
The traditional event is regarded to by many as the largest brand activation activity. On the day, the faculty representatives, lecturers, deans of faculties and advisors from the future students’ services, provide information on programmes offered, offer advice to and answer queries on admissions, fees and scholarships that prospectus booklets don’t answer. The university on the other hand, gets a chance to ‘brag’ and recruit at the same time!
The day which is also a defining day for the brightest mind, serves as a motivation for learners to study harder and succeed in their final year of high school. Participating schools are invited through direct marketing, constant engagements as well as the media at large. 2014 had a huge turnout of 3 138 learners as compared to 2 886 in 2013 and 1 467 in 2012.
As part of the campus tour, learners and parents were able to view faculty video clips, have a mini lecture and face to face. Student Services also played a role in showing the learners what the university has to offers beyond lecture times. For schools, it is an addition to their Life Orientation studies. They get the first-hand experience and information prior to deciding on the best career options available and they are able to make informed career choices.