Category Archives: South Africa

First time a UNISA

On Tuesday we drove to Pretoria (possibly renamed to Tshwane) to UNISA which is the University of South Africa. It is a distant learning University which provides the whole country with university education as an addition to classical universities. We went there so Manfred could deliver some theses to the UNISA equivalent of an “Akademisches Pruefungsamt”. We also took the chance to check out the computer science department.

While UNISA has no or only a view students which study directly at the university, the buildings of UNISA are that big that the university of Oldenburg could easily be stored in them twice. As no room is used for lectures, most of the buildings are filled with offices for scientist.

After running around for a while we managed to get into the right building and walk in the right direction. Well first we ended up in social studies, but after a view questions we managed to get to the computer science department. Compared to the other corridors these corridors had wooden doors. Very nice 🙂

The guy in the “Pruefungsamt” had given us a room number for the secretary of the computer science dep. so we went there and I explained that I am interested in getting an PhD in CS especially in software engineering. And I learned two important things form this encounter. First, they have a software engineering section and I also got a room number, and second, the greeting protocol in South Africa begins with “How are you” and not with “Hello”, “Good Morning” or something similar.

With these two informations freshly imprinted in my weak gray matter, we moved to the software engineering section. Were I tested the newly learned protocol, which worked quite well. Unfortunately the professor didn’t have time, because he was in a meeting. However, we arranged a date later this day or on Friday. The exact date however had to be clarified with the professor himself. So his secretary promised us to call us when she spoke with the professor.

So Manfred and I did some delivery in Pretoria and stopped for lunch, when she called us. the date was on Friday 11:00.

Back in Joburg

The Rest of the trip was just fine. We switched driving two times and so I drove through the night for about three hours which is not a big issue. However, the speed of vehicles is hard to predict. And some vehicles do not have proper lighting or should I say have no lights at all. So you cannot see them. But on the other hand such things keep you awake ;-).

We arrived in Joburg with the last drop of gas at 2 o’clock (Sunday). And just walked our beds, without proper unpacking. This we left to the next morning.

On Sunday morning we went up and got ready for church, because this is what they do on Sundays. And actually church is not the worst thing you could do in the morning. The acutally have a coffee bar in the church and rock music. So this is quite different to the German church experience.