DES MOINES — The Board of Regents has approved a freeze on tuition at the three state-supported universities for the fall semester.The vote came after the board heard from representatives of each school. University of Northern Iowa student body president Elle Boeding thanked the board for the freeze and asked them to consider doing more.“We urge you to extend the freeze through the spring semester. The economic impacts of COVID-19 will extend far beyond the fall, and our students deserve the opportunity to continue their education for the same cost as in the fall,” Boeding says.Iowa State University student body president Morgan Fritz agrees the students will continue to face issues. “In order to receive an exception educational — students must first be able to come to Iowa State,” Fritz says. “And tuition will represent even a steeper barrier in the coming year than it did before this pandemic.” She thanked the Board of Regents for the fall tuition freeze — and says state lawmakers should also act.“If our state representatives also want to contribute toward ensuring an exceptional education and improving life for all Iowans — they must make funding of the regent universities a priority when considering budget cuts through the remainder of the session,” according to Fritz.University of Iowa Student Body President Conner Woof also says the question of the affordability of education will not go away. “I thank you for your support of a fall 2020 tuition freeze — and I urge you to continue this conversation as we look to the future,” Wooof says. The board also approve freezing all mandatory frees for the fall semester during their online meeting.
Enhancing service delivery He explained that the Port Alfred Hospital had to be rebuilt in its entirety, as the old hospital was originally situated in a low-lying area that frequently experienced flooding. Netcare CEO Richard Friedland said the hospital truly raised the bar in terms of the provision of healthcare services in the surrounding areas, and that the hospital had already received widespread interest from medical specialists who would like to make use of its well-equipped facilities. “The long-term development of the region has already been boosted substantially because of the purchasing of construction materials,” she said. “The ongoing procurement of ‘soft services’, which is expected to exceed R600-million over the operational period of the project, will ensure a continued benefit for the community for many years to come.” According to Majodina, the Port Alfred Hospital, which features public and private facilities side by side, will benefit the local community not only by providing healthcare, but also through the provision of jobs and business opportunities. 23 February 2009 Nalithemba Hospitals chairman Mike Magwa said the two main objectives of the project were to enhance patient flow and service delivery at the hospital, through ensuring that the facilities were as user-friendly as possible and capable of supporting modern healthcare services. “The new Port Alfred Hospital includes a new theatre block with an additional theatre, and extended radiology facility, improved access to the hospital, as well as a new reception and waiting areas,” he said. “State-of-the-art medical equipment was also installed at the hospital, [which] includes a four-bed maternity ward and a 26-bed general ward.” Magwa also pointed out that the hospital could now provide a full range of healthcare services to private patients, who until now had to travel to either East London or Port Elizabeth to seek private healthcare services. Raising the bar on healthcare SAinfo reporter The new Port Alfred Hospital, the result of a partnership between the Eastern Cape Department of Health and a private consortium consisting of Nalithemba Hospitals and Netcare, has opened its doors well ahead of schedule. “Good news for the community of the greater Port Alfred area is that we have created 75 full-time positions within the hospital, while contracted external providers have created many more opportunities,” he said. “As the demand for the hospital’s services increase, so to will the number of jobs created.” “I am both proud and delighted to open this hospital, which is a beacon of hope to us all and an inspiration to the greater South African healthcare industry,” Majodina said. “We believe that by being able to share our expertise with the local government and people of these communities, we will make a truly valuable contribution to the health and wellbeing of the Eastern Cape, while helping to promote sustainable economic development.” Present at the opening last week, Eastern Cape Health MEC Pemmy Majodina said the success of the private-public partnership model was a tribute to the power of participation and unity. As part of the deal, the private consortium will be responsible for managing both public and private facilities at the hospital for 15 years. Advantages for communities He added that a minimum of 50% of the shareholding in the consortium was held by local black people – with black women comprising a percentage of the management of both the private party and their key contractors – and that this would continue being the case during the 15-year lifespan of the project. “In public private partnerships such as these, great emphasis is placed on skills transfer and embedding management and clinical policies that unsure the upkeep of the quality of care delivered,” Friedland said. During its pre-opening inspection, the hospital drew high praise from representatives of both the national Department of Health and the Board of Healthcare Funders. “Through this public private partnership, empowerment in the Eastern Cape will be boosted substantially,” Friedland said. “As much as 40% of the construction and 50% of the ongoing operational expenditure has and will continue going to black people or enterprises.” Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo material read more
Joan Joffe, business leader turned ‘venture catalyst’. (Image: Joan Joffe)MEDIA CONTACTS • Joan JoffeRELATED ARTICLES• Businesswomen leaving a legacy• New body to empower SA women• Gender equality under the spotlightYvonne FontynTiming has a lot to do with being successful, says Joan Joffe, one of the most recognisable faces in South African business. “Well, you certainly caught the computer wave,” I mention to her when we meet at a Rosebank hotel. “I caught three waves!” she responds. “The PC wave, the cellphone wave and the black economic empowerment wave.” It’s not just a matter of luck, though. Joffe says if you want to succeed “you have to be out there looking for opportunities all the time, and work very, very hard”.The owner of her own IT company, a former senior executive of Vodacom and a former Businesswoman of the Year, Joffe should know. Having left the cellphone giant about 11 years ago, she has worked as a business consultant and served on the boards of several companies, including that of Nozala, a broad-based black empowerment women’s investment company. Today, says the seventysomething-year-old, who looks fit and vibrant, “I stay below the radar.”But to her that means working from a home office and facilitating several projects. “I call myself a ‘venture catalyst’ – rather than being on the operational side, I initiate projects. People approach me with products and ideas and I introduce them to other people who can help bring their plans to fruition.” The sweet feeling she has when a deal goes through is still there, she says.Women do things differentlyA maths and philosophy – “the logics side” – graduate, Joffe says she never found being a female in male-dominated industries a disadvantage. She also never felt compelled to emulate men’s workplace style to get ahead. “Business is about differentiating yourself from others. It is different, being a woman when there is a majority of men, so use it.”On the whole, women do approach things differently, says Joffe. “The skills a woman brings to a company or a board are different from the skills considered stereotypically male. In general, women have a more consultative, empathetic approach, and that is the kind of leadership we need in South Africa today. We don’t need autocratic leadership.”Organisations are realising this and so there are many more opportunities today for women who want to succeed. “Companies want women in executive positions and on their boards.”There are also infinitely more resources available to women today, says Joffe – “through the internet there is much more opportunity to acquire knowledge” – and females in this country are in a strong position: “The only thing limiting us is our vision of ourselves. Women should realise they can be anyone and anything.”Forging a careerJoffe’s father was a prominent Johannesburg lawyer and a community leader and it was from his example that she chose her own path. She planned to study law but after she completed her bachelor’s degree at the University of the Witwatersrand, the world of computers called and she began working as a programmer for ICL. Then her husband got the opportunity to study at Stanford University and she joined him in the US. There she was able to study computer science for two years and spend some time working in the IT industry. The couple spent a total of four years in the US. “The standard at Stanford was much higher than at Wits. When we came back I felt I was ahead of the pack.”She worked for some years at IBM as a systems engineer and then joined Hewlett-Packard. The company’s scientific and financial calculators were in huge demand and she opened a business selling them in Braamfontein, in Johannesburg. Then, she said, “I attended a meeting where they talked about the latest innovation, PCs, and a red light came on for me. I knew it was the future.”She personally flew to the US to buy computers from an IBM retailer and in 1977, Joffe Associates was born, supplying computers to individuals and big companies in the Johannesburg CBD. In 1986 she sold Joffe Associates to Datakor and some years later, was approached by Vodacom to take up a position as marketing director. When she left the cellphone operator in 2002 she returned to consulting and became a director of technology group Datacentrix.Apart from always “keeping their antennae up for opportunities”, Joffe’s advice to women who want to make it in business is:Be prepared to take a risk. “Be careful about how big it is and do your research first, but take a risk.”When it comes to juggling family responsibilities – Joffe has two sons – she says it must be managed well. “Companies should help women with children; it helps if management is sensitive to these issues. Speak to your boss and if you don’t receive support, consider moving on.” At the same time, there should be quid pro quo. “If you take time off for the school gala or lift scheme, for example, work the time in, and never take advantage of the arrangement.”Don’t limit your thinking – be ambitious in whatever field you are in.Work exceptionally hard.Surround yourself with people who are positive and co-operative.Be prepared to share and help others, and bring them up the ladder with you.Prioritise family, never neglect them in favour of work.Pick a supportive partner because, “if your partner is unhelpful or does not accept your ambition, your options will be to leave your partner or to leave your ambition”.There is no need to copy men. These days success is based on ability, not gender.Be visible: “Tell people if you have done something fantastic; don’t be a shy violet.” Joffe said it was a challenge when she first saw her image on a front-page newspaper advertisement for her company. “My ad agency said we had to place the ad because I was the USP [unique selling proposition] of the company. I was horrified.” But she got used to it and her business grew exponentially.And finally, “see the positive aspects in every situation, don’t focus on the negative. Keep you vision in mind.”One might add remain gracious and grounded, because it strikes me that South Africa’s first lady of ICT is those things as well. read more