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University as a member of the Community

By Solomzi Tshona, 20th April 2015

The understanding of the notion that states that we are members of the community before we are students in any university or the being of the university is based on the geographic location that the university finds itself in, with the better understanding of its cosmopolitan image that splits from different cultures.

How we as students we are shaped by the university speaks volumes in us being the contributor of the community development, like it is said that the wisdom is like a Baobab tree, no one individual can embrace it (Akan). The University of Fort Hare embraces that wisdom as stated above and with the knowledge that the university is the receipt of the Baobab Award.

However, the pedagogy of place is one of the most important ones that is in relation to how the university shape its students at an epistemological point of view to be the active citizens, the form of university has a reasonable pedagogy in shaping the community around its geographic proximate and the contributions to the community indeed matter to the people of the community.

The role of the students of fort Hare University after having received the form of critical pedagogy must be checked has to whether the students of the university are the breeding ground in terms of shaping intellectual arguments that lead to the development of the community and its being.

Furthermore, it is, in some instances said that the university is not obligated to  give back to the community but, in all honesty the university should be giving back to the community based on a crystal clear observation that the research output carried out by the university must declare to community development and so on. It should not be underestimated the fact that the scholarly development produced by the university must be reflective of the community.

Dr. Nelson Mandale clearly puts it that education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.

This puts us in a view that says as stated, that the use of research output must be used to change the world not the be used on bases of one becoming elite to the community that one comes from.

Consequently, the epistemological ostentation must be reflective to the community in general. We can thus argue that the role that some of the universities give to the students is the most proper one, by virtue of them allowing the program of community engagement. Universities must not thus be used to create elitist groups in the community but must develop organic intellectuals that are able to take the theory into practice to help development in the geographic proximate.

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