In this issue:

In hierdie uitgawe:



Staff news / Personeelnuus
Did you know? / Het jy geweet?
 Letter of the Editor
Patent awareness seminar, 7 October 2015
“For Dummies” prize-giving ceremony, 12 October 2015
Open Access Week
DSL Year-end function - 27 November 2015
Map exhibition – November 2015
Hour survey results
Mission Impossible Possible – the book is orange…!
HICSA meeting, November 2015
The Merensky library - a romantic setting for engagement photographs!
Long service certificates for staff members, November 2015
Christmas tree, December 2015
10 Tips to be More Grateful in Life
New e-books
Special Collections book of the month


DLS  Calendar /

DBD Kalender

January/Januarie - March/Maart





SunSmart Skin Cancer Awareness




1 New Years Day / Nuwejaarsdag
4 World Braille Day
4 Academic year commences / Aanvang van akademiese jaar
4-15 UP Somerskool/Summer School
11 UP DLS Exco Meeting
15 Wikipedia Day
15-17 Spesiale Oriëntering vir Nie-RSA studente / Special Orientation for Non-RSA Students
16 UP Verwelkomingsdag / Welcoming Day
17 World Religion Day
18-21 Registrasie van eerstejaarstudente / Registration of first-year-students
18 UP DLS Exco Meeting
22 Indeling van groot kursusgroepe: nuwe eerstejaarstudente / Grouping op large course groups: new first-year-students
25 Documents Collections Sub-committee Meeting
25 Aanvang van lesings:  Alle eerstejaarmodules / Lectures commence:  All first-year modules

UP DLS Exco Meeting

25-29 Registrasie van senior studente / Registration of senior students
30 Jool / Rag
31 World Leprosy Day




Healthy Lifestyle Awareness / Reproductive Health




1-7 World Inderfaith Harmony Week

Aanvang van lesings vir kwartaal 1 en semester 1 / Lectures commence for quarter 1 and semester 1

1-2 DLS Exco Care & Growth Leadership Strategy Session
2 World Wetlands Day
4 World Cancer Day
5  World Nutella Day
08-14/02 Pregnancy Awareness Week


International Epilepsy Day

UP DLS Exco Meeting

10-16/02 STI/Condom Week
10  Anniversary of the University's establishment / Herdenking van die stigting van die Universiteit
13 World Radio Day
15 Sluitingsdatum:  Wysigings of staking van modules / Closing date: Amendments or cancellation of modules
15 UP DLS Exco Meeting
20 World Day of Social Justice
21 International Mother Language Day
22 Healthy Lifestyle Awareness Day
22 World Thinking Day
22 UP DLS Exco Meeting
29 DLS Group Care & Growth Leadership Workshop



TB  and Health Awareness



1 DLS Group Care & Growth Leadership Workshop

International Day of the Seal

3 World Wildlife Day

World Orphan Week

04-08/03 School Health Week

World Spelling Day

06-12/03 World Glaucoma Week

UP DLS Exco Meeting


International Women's Day


Commonwealth Day


World Kidney Day


World Maths Day


UP DLS Exco Meeting


World Consumer Rights Day


World Salt  Awareness Week

18 Lesing sluit af vir kwartaal 1 / Lectures end for quarter 1
19/03-03/04 Maart/April-reses / March/April recess

World Head Injury Awareness Day


Lectures end for term 1 / Lesings sluit af vir kwartaal 1


Human Rights Day / Menseregtedag

World Forestry Day

International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination

World Down Syndrome Day


World Water Day


World Meteorological Day


Int. Remembrance Day – Victims of Slavery and Transatlantic Slave Trade

International Waffle Day

24 World TB Day
29 World Earth Hour
31 Strategic Forum Meeting



If you have any feedback, regarding this newsletter, article ideas or suggestions,

please contact the editorial staff:




Indien jy enige terugvoer, artikels,

voorstelle het vir of oor hierdie nuusbrief,

kontak asseblief die redaksie:


Elsabé Olivier





of / or


Diana Gerritsen

Design and Layout /

Ontwerp en Uitleg







May your birthday be filled with many happy hours and your life with many happy birthdays.





Mag jou verjaardag gevul word met baie gelukkige ure en jou lewe met baie gelukkig verjaarsdae.




Block Beukes

Timothy Matheba


Myleen Oosthuizen

Shirley Shai


Amos Lusenga


Maria Moselane


Wanani Sitsula


Calvyn Badenhorst

Sonty Monakhisi


Mike Volschenk


Hendriëtte Janse van Vuuren

21 Yandisa Makaluza


Liana Viljoen


Anette Lessing



Louisa Buys


Izak van der Walt

Sagren Naidoo


Magriet Lee


Lidia Swart


Johan Swart


Fay Fabris-Rotelli

Nolusindiso Skeyi


Adam Munonoka


Ora Cloete


Susan Scheepers

Fundiswa Buthelezi


Cora Bezuidenhout

21 Lungile Rathepe


January Mokgonoane


Monia Johnson


Tersia Coetsee

Gertrud Meyer



Leonora Wydeman


Francina Laka

Magdeline Gomba

5 Lindiwe Soyizwapi


Ephenia Peu

12 Maggie Sindwa


Clara Ngobeni

Joël Sefolo


Marinda Maritz


Richard Mbokane


Cindy-Lee Daniels


Dennis Mabena



Staff news


We bid farewell

to the following staff members /

Ons sê totsiens

aan die volgende personeellede


Mr Dennis Mabena from the Faculty library: Humanities and Theology who resigned at the end of December.


Our condolences to ........ /

Ons innige simpatie aan ........


Johanna Shika wie se seun oorlede is.


Johann van Wyk wie se vader oorlede is.


Welcome to the following

new staff members ........ /

Welkom aan die volgende nuwe personeel ........



Ms Zandile Chansa joined the EMS team on October 1st, at the DLS.


Here are a few questions we asked Zandile to know her better ....


1.       Where are you from (where were you born) and what is home to you?



2.       What would you be doing if you weren't at your current job?

I would be running my business Zandis Delights.


3.       What more are you wanting in your career right now?

I want to study further.


4.       If you knew that in one year you would die suddenly, would you change anything about the way you are living right now?

No, but am sure I would stop working and spend all the time I have left with my kids.


5.       If you were to tell one person "Thank You" for helping me become the person I am today, who would it be and what did they do?

My Grandmother- for raising me and encouraging me to be whatever I want to be, besides her never having set  foot at school. In turn I taught her how to write her name.





Ms Agnes Mogudi joined the Interlending team on October 1st, at the Department of Library Services.





Ms Mathuloe Moshidi joined the Veterinary team at Jotello F. Soga Library, Onderstepoort on December 1st, at the Department of Library Services.





Mr Lathola Mchunu joined the EBIT team on January1st, at the DLS.


Here are a few questions we asked Latohola to know him better ....


1.     Where are you from (where were you born) and what is home to you?

I’m from Newcastle, KZN. To me home is where I find love, my family and friends.


2.     What is one word you would use to describe yourself as a child?



3.     When are you the happiest?

When everyone around me is laughing and having a good time together.


4.     What movie or novel character do you most identify with?

Tyrese Gibson’s character, Roman, in the Fast and Furious movies. I identify with this character because I work hard and accomplish seemingly impossible tasks. I also enjoy laughing and making the job less stressful for everyone.


5.     What characteristic do you most admire in others?






Mr Elmar Snyman joined the HR team on January 1st, at the DLS.


Here are a few questions we asked Elmar to know him better ....


1.      What's the most important lesson you've learned in the last year?

If you put your trust in God, anything is possible.


2.    When are you the happiest?

I am the happiest on a cold rainy day, looking over the ocean at Herold’s bay.


 3.   How do you recharge?

I enjoy recharging after a tough day at work by playing some computer games.


4.    What super power would you like to have?

I think telekinesis (the ability to move objects with your mind) would be a great super power to have.


 5.   What are you most afraid of and what's it stopping you from doing?

I do not like heights at all. I would never do anything that involves me jumping out of or from anything.


Getting to know your colleagues /

Leer jou kollegas ken


Helmien van den Berg


Here are a few questions we asked Helmien to know her better ....


1.     Where are you from (where were you born) and what is home to you?

I was born in Greys Hospital in Pietermaritzburg, where both Lindiwe Soyizwapi and Ujala Satgoor were born.  I grew up in England and then in Pretoria.


2.     Where did you work previously and for how long?

Previously, I worked at Media Centre Services in the Department of Education and Training for 7 years. Exciting times as we had to start using computers for the first time ever! We had to develop our own software (as none was available), with a lot of trial and error.  


3.     How do you recharge? 

I love doing 10 km road races (walking, though) on Saturdays and best of all, playing with my grandchildren.


4.     What characteristic do you most admire in others?

I love working with intelligent people, which makes my work such a pleasure. I admire those with common sense.  It seems to be something lacking in the human race.


5.     What's the most important lesson you've learned in the last year?

You are never too old or too intelligent to learn new things from people that cross your path on a daily basis. It is crucial that your mind set remains open to change and new possibilities throughout your life.


6.     If you ruled the world, what would you change on Day 1?

If I ruled the world, I would immediately get rid of all politicians! The rest of us get along fine and enjoy each other’s company a lot. The world would be a much better place without them. I would also make Thuli Madonsela our President.




Soekie Swanepoel


Here are a few questions we asked Soekie to know her better ....


1.     Where did you work previously and for how long?

My previous work experience includes the Public Library in Bloemfontein, Nasionale Afrikaanse Letterkunde Museum and the Research Institute for Education Planning at the University of the Free State. In 1994 we moved to Pretoria and luckily for me I was able to start my “second life” at the Merensky 2 Library.


2.     What would you be doing if you weren’t at your current job?

I would love to design shoes.


3.     How do you recharge?

I am captivated by the sea - the sound of the waves and the smoothness of the water in the distance. The experience of this great natural marvel always makes me realise where I need to ask for guidance and strength.


4.     When are you the happiest?

I am the happiest when I am with my children and grandchildren.


5.     If you were to tell one person “Thank you” for helping me become the person I am today who would it be and what did they do? 

I believe that I am what I am because that is what God wants me to be. He also blessed me with amazing parents. I am especially thankful for my dad who was a humble and good man. Furthermore, I believe that every person who crosses your path makes a difference in your life. I try to learn from these people regardless of whether the interaction was good or bad.













Het jy geweet .......








..... braille is in die negentiende eeu uitgevind deur 'n man met die naam Louis Braille, wat heeltemal blind was.


Did you know.......




...  the lie detector was invented in 1921. 


  • aper originated from China









  • all the blinking in one day equates to having your eyes closed for 30 minutes






Contributed by Diana Gerritsen


  • mia nuts are toxic to dogs
    • macadamia nuts are toxic to dogs





























































  • macadamia nuts are toxic to do
  • lemons contain more sugar than strawberries
  • lemons cont

Letter from the Editor


This first newsletter of the year covers the last three months of 2015. It seems like very old news now that we have already welcomed February 2016, but I am sure that you will find interesting news and titbits of information here that you have not heard before! If you have an interesting story to share, please remember to forward it to us – we are looking forward to publishing your contribution.


Kind regards


Elsabé Olivier



2016  Welcome message from the director


I welcome all of you back to the UP Library Services at the start of 2016.


A wise man once said do not ask for a life without problems, but ask for more and better skills that will enable you to deal effectively with the problems and challenges that will come your way. 


There is no point in asking or wishing for a year without problems. Judging by the events of last year and the few days of 2016 we are faced with strong and rough winds ahead. The following are examples of the events I am referring to:

*              the “#Fees must fall” and related campaigns by university students,

*              the downgrading of SA by some of the credit rating institutions,

*              the steep downward slide of the value of the rand against the US$ and other foreign currencies. The rand touched R17.00 level to the US$ recently (not so long ago it was around R14 to the $),

*              drastically reduced income (subsidies and fees) for the University versus  expected sharp increases in the overall University expenditure,

*              etc.:

In the light of the above my wish for each one of you is the “better set of your sails”. I have learned about the importance of the set of my sail from Jim Rohn. He has taught that “it is the set of the sails, not the direction of the wind that determines which way we will go”. In other words “it is not what happens that determines your life’s future. It’s what you do about what happens”. Likening us to sailboats he has aptly observed that it is not the blowing of the wind that determines our destination. “It’s the set of the sail”.


He has observed that “the same wind blows on us all. The wind of disaster, the wind of opportunity, the wind of change, the wind when it’s upside down, the wind when it’s favourable and unfavourable”.  The difference in whether you arrive at the destination that is in line with your concept of success in one year, three years, or five years is not “the blowing of the wind but the set of the sail” (


My wish for you, therefore, is that you may have the wisdom and courage to set your sails in such a way that rough and strong winds that are blowing around us take you to your desired destination. 


Robert Moropa

Director: Department of Library Services


Patent awareness seminar, 7 October 2015


The Department of Library Services, in collaboration with the Technology Transfer Office of the University of Pretoria (UP) and Thomson Reuters, hosted a Patent Awareness Seminar on Wednesday, 7 October. The target audience was academic staff members and postgraduate students. Only a small group attended this event; however the majority of the attendees indicated afterwards that they found the content extremely interesting and informative. It was also suggested that if repeated, early career researchers should attend this event in the future as it would be of particular interest to them.


The attendees were welcomed by Mr Robert Moropa, the Director of the Department of Library Services. Prof Stephanie Burton, Vice-Principal: Research and Postgraduate Education, set the scene with her introduction. Mr Zulfaqar Dudhia from Thomson Reuters was the first presenter, followed by Mr Tyron Grant who covered the topic of Research commercialisation. Mr Grant is a South African patent attorney and specialises in domestic and international patent matters, particularly in biotechnology and life sciences and was a very popular presenter. The University of Pretoria’s Prof Elsabe Kearsley, who heads the Department of Civil Engineering, addressed “From research to commercialisation”. Ms Refilwe Ngoato, Manager of the Technology Transfer Office closed the session before the attendees shared lunch and networked with each other.

From left to right:  Mr Zulfaqar Dudhia, Ms Refilwe Ngoato, Ms Sunette Steynberg, Mr Tyron Grant and Ms Elsabe Olivier.


Contributed by  Elsabé Olivier

“For Dummies” prize-giving ceremony, 12 October 2015


A competition for National Book week was held during the first week of September. Students were invited to dress up with the props provided and pose with their favourite For Dummies book.


The “For Dummies” book winners received their book prizes on 12 October 2015 from sponsors Wiley and Bookmark. The winners and their book choices were:


·         Michael John Bennet with "Investing for dummies";

·         Dikeledi Moeketsi with "Calculus for Dummies";

·         Jurgen Wolfenden with "Dream Dictionary for Dummies";

·         Keketso Motsoeneng with "French for Dummies".




Contributed by  Elsabé Olivier

Open Access Week


During Open Access Week our faculty libraries showed their support for Open Access through their colourful and creative displays: 


To view more photos - click on the link below: 


Contributed by Elsabé Olivier


DSL Year-end function - 27 November 2015


27 November 2015 saw the DLS year-end function take place at the Tuscan BBQ in Groenkloof.


This annual event was organised by the Humanities Faculty library team, who chose a hat theme for the occasion. The team challenged all library staff to come up with hilarious hats, historic hats, or even hair-raising ones!


Humanities staff members greeted DLS staff members at registration, handed out drinks tickets and informed them about how to enter one of the lucky draw competitions. Staff members showed that they had taken the challenge seriously, and sported lovely examples of all kinds of hats.


Marieta Buys, Head of the Humanities Faculty library, welcomed the guests. She wore a wonderfully recognizable hat – a Dr Suess’ Cat in a Hat hat!


A drumming session by Julius Kyakuwa set the tone for the festivities, after which DLS Director, Mr Moropa thanked his team for their hard work.


Prizes were handed out, trips were made to the well-laden buffet tables and leisurely conversations were enjoyed.


The final word is a wish of good luck to the Level 5 team who will be the organisers of the 2016 year-end function. We hope you enjoy the planning as much as we did!



Contributed by Humanities Faculty Library unit


Map exhibition – November 2015


The International Map Year 2015-2016 was organized by the International Cartographic Association (ICA) and supported by the United Nations Committee of Experts on Global Geospatial Information Management.


International Map Year (IMY) is a worldwide celebration of maps and their unique role in our world. IMY provides opportunities to demonstrate, follow, and get involved in the art, science and technology of making and using maps and geographic information. Supported by the United Nations, IMY is an intensive international, interdisciplinary, scientific, and social strategy to focus on the importance of maps and geographic information in the world today. The most important legacies will be a new generation of cartographers and geographic information scientists, as well as an exceptional level of interest and participation from professionals, school children, the general public, and decision-makers, worldwide.


The University of Pretoria’s Centre for Geoinformation Science (CGIS) in the Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences joined the International Map Year celebrations with a number of activities. Amongst these, University of Pretoria students and staff participated in various map competitions.


In the first of two Map Competitions initiated by the CGIS, UP students (under- and postgraduate) and UP staff of any discipline were free to make a map using any combination of technologies and data.  A description, explaining its purpose, as well as the methods, software and data used in its design and production was also submitted.


During the second round of the UP CGIS Map Competition, first year GIS students had to familiarise themselves with South Africa’s National Development Plan (NDP) 2030. An area of concern (theme) was chosen for which data was collected and analysed for the purpose of the map. Third year UP GIS students also produced visualisations to assist the Alaska community of Mamelodi with geospatial information and maps.


Various products of the UP CGIS Map Competitions were displayed in the Merensky 2 library during the month of November 2015 as well as mapping products from the Centre itself and other organisations locally and internationally.






Contributed by Ingrid Booysen, Senior Cartographer, Department of Geography, Geoinformatics and Meteorology

Hour survey results


After numerous requests by students for longer library operating hours, the Department of Library Services' Quality Office ran a survey from 17 July to 11 August 2015 to identify our clients’ needs. The results of the survey were communicated early October 2015. The operating hours were adjusted for the two remaining busy months of October and November 2015.


Here are a few interesting statistics about our survey results:

·         499 responses were received;

·         Most of the responses came from students who made use of the Merensky 2 Library (362), Groenkloof Library (36) and the Oliver R Tambo Law Library (34);

·         437 undergraduate students, 56 postgraduate students, 5 staff members and 1 other client participated in the survey;

·         Although 201 respondents indicated that the current operating hours were convenient to them, 299 disagreed;

·         Most clients prefer longer operating hours during the week, Mondays to Thursdays as well as on Saturdays;

·         The two most critical reasons clients need longer operating hours are the need for a quiet space and a safe and secure environment to study and do assignments;

·         88 comments were also received and were forwarded for consideration to the relevant Faculty library managers.


Read more:



Contributed by Elsabé Olivier

Mission Impossible Possible – the book is orange…!


Students often come to us with their queries and with little to no information. Although this seemingly impossible mission might seem daunting, the challenge is always appreciated.


It was a November afternoon when a Civil Engineering student came to my office. She seemed puzzled and asked if I could assist her in finding a book her supervisor needed.


The only information the supervisor gave her was that it is a collection of conference proceedings bound with an orange cover. This situation reminded me of a YouTube video, The Confusing Library, which I watched recently. In this library books are arranged according to the colour of the cover page. (Link to video:


We searched the Library’s catalogue to no avail. Google helped us find a reference to the Conference, but we were still unable to trace it in the Library. I asked the student, “Why does he need it? Perhaps, I can request an article from the proceedings via Interlending?” The student replied, “No! He only wants a photo of the cover page of the book. He needs a picture of this book to show as part of his presentation for the same Conference.”


With further investigation on the topics covered we headed to the shelves. Low and behold we found two volumes of the Conference. 




Contributed by Cora Bezuidenhout

HICSA meeting, November 2015


The Health Information Community of South Africa (HICSA) is a small interest group of librarians working in the field of health information. Information sharing between group members are mainly through the listserve, but the formal meeting, biennial, is a great opportunity for face-to-face networking.


This year’s meeting was held on Friday, 20 November 2015 in the newly built Lesedi Complex on the Onderstepoort Campus. The guest speaker was Dr Gerhard Steenkamp, who had an informative and insightful a presentation on Saving the Survivors programme. He collaborated with Dr Johan Marais on this programme. The programme focuses on the care for rhinoceros that have survived poaching and other traumatic incidents.

Delegates of this biennial meeting were also given a tour of the recently launched, state-of-the-art Skills Laboratory by Dr Elrien Scheepers.




Contributed by Marguerite Nel

The Merensky library - a romantic setting for engagement photographs!


In October 2015 Leonard Daniels forwarded an interesting request to me: two former UP students wanted to have their engagement photographs taken in the Merensky 2 library. Being a romantic at heart I approved the idea. Estian Strydom, his fiancée Marlie and their photographer “Who's Annah” visited the Merensky Library’s Special Collections on Tuesday 15 December for the photographic shoot.  


I was intrigued to know the story behind their desire to have their photographs taken in a library of all places. This was Estian’s reply: “Our story began in 2013 - both of us studied at the University of Pretoria and walked through the same library without knowing how close we were to our happiness. It took us four years before we met! We thought it would only be appropriate to go back to a place where we have been so many times, only this time - together. Life has its own twists and turns, but we found each other." 


Congratulations Estian and Marlie – we wish you lots of love and many more happy hours amongst the books that you love!


Contributed by Elsabé Olivier

Long service certificates for staff members, November 2015


One can’t help wondering what it must be like working at an institution for 20 years or longer! On 3 November 2015 the library director, Mr Robert Moropa recognized the long service of a number of very loyal staff members:


§  Gerda Ehlers and Junior Baloyi received long service certificates for 30 years of service;

§  Louisa Buys, Leonora Wydeman and Richard Mbokane have all been working in this Department for 25 years;

§  Diana Gerritsen, Chrissie Boeyens, Soekie Swanepoel, David Maseko and Adam Munonoka were awarded certificates for 20 years of service;

§  Christelle Steyn received a certificate for 15 years of service;  

§  Lastly Jeffrey Mashapa was recognized for 10 years of service.


David Maseko, from the Journals and Books Division, had the following to say about all his years at the University of Pretoria: "For me personally, it is a very good feeling working this long in one institution. The reason being the benefits I can enjoy as an employee and the atmosphere is also so great!"


Louis Buys from the Learning Centre shares: “I started work at Merensky in April 1989.  Since working here, I have learned something new almost every day.  I enjoy working on such a beautiful campus and love the young and vibrant atmosphere.  The best thing of all is that I have made true and lifelong friends here.”


Chrissie Boeyens, Co-ordinator Acquisitions and E-Resources agrees: “I find the Merensky library a very stimulating environment. There are so many changes and developments that it feels like you have a new job every year! The people working here are wonderful. I can just say thank you for these years.”


Gerda Ehlers, Co-ordinator of the Learning Centre remembers: “My road with UP began in January 1979 when I started my first degree at UP and since then I have remained loyal and still believe that UP is simply the best institution to work for.  I started my first working day at this institution in August 1985. I was a shy inexperienced young adult who had to continue my footsteps on this campus as an employee at the library and not a student.  Department of Library Services I salute you  and my managers over the years and thank you for every opportunity that you gave me - from learning how to use DOBIS and computer systems to being a manager myself. Not one workday has passed without me learning and developing.  Today I am more self-confident with years of experience, but most of all I have grown as a person. I have learned to appreciate every person - from a first-year student to an elderly person who is busy with a PhD. UP and the Library will always be part of me. My road with this institution for the last 30 years was just amazing, I thank God that this was his plan for me and my career.  It is an honour and privilege to have been working here for 30 years! “


Diana Gerritsen shares:  "I joined the Merensky 2 Library (at that time known as the Academic Information Service) in February 1995 as secretary to the two deputy directors, Prof. Henk de Bruin and Dr. Willie Lubbe. It was a strange but challenging environment to work in as my previous experience was more in the private sector and not in an academic institution. After two years, I was appointed as secretary to the then director Prof. Eggie Gerryts until his retirement in 2004. I am presently the secretary for Mr. Robert Moropa, our current director. It is a great privilege to work for one of the best academic institutions in South Africa. Over the years I have met and worked with wonderful people (many already retired), from whom I could learn to develop and grow as a person in my profession.  I am very grateful for the benefit for my children to successfully complete their higher education at this institution, in preparation for their careers.  I thank my Heavenly Father for all His grace that I received, to be part of the Merensky team for 20 years and hopefully for many more years to come."




Contributed by Elsabé Olivier


Christmas tree, December 2015



Our 2105 Christmas tree Project was done in partnership with the Department of Civil Engineering.



Sarah Skorpen, Jaco Botha and Daniel Motloung from the Department of Civil Engineering were responsible for the design and construction. The Marketing Office was responsible for the expenses (which were kept to a minimum). According to Sarah they also had some input from the rest of the department which led to some interesting tea room discussions!



A sincere thanks goes out to Cora Bezuidenhout and Rianie van der Linde who were responsible for the decorations of the tree. The tree brought smiles to the many students who were under stress during the exam period and many selfies were taken in front of the tree. The professional photographer captured the image of the 2015 tree and it was used in our Department’s Christmas card.



The framework now belongs to the library. If you are interested in joining the Decorating Committee for 2016, please let us know!




Staff members from the Department Civil Engineering designed and built our Christmas tree!


Contributed by Cora Bezuidenhout and Elsabe Olivier


Visitors to the Merensky 2 Library


Visitors from the Merensky Foundation - 15 October 2015


The Department of Library Services received guests from the Merensky Foundation on 15 October 2015. From left to right Ms Hilda Kriel, Dr Khotso Mokhele (Chancellor of the University of the Free State), Dr Kevin Mossie, Mr Robert Moropa, Prof Karen Theron, Dr Carl Seele (Chairman of Hans Merensky Holdings (Pty) Ltd.) and Lindiwe Soyizwapi.



From left to right:  Ms Hilda Kriel, Dr Khotso Mokhele (Chancellor of the University of the Free State), Dr Kevin Mossie, Mr Robert Moropa,

Prof Karen Theron, Dr Carl Seele (Chairman of Hans Merensky Holdings (Pty) Ltd.) and Lindiwe Soyizwapi.


Pretoria Boys High School's Media Centre prefects visited the Merensky 2 library - 28 October 2015



Pretoria Boys High School's Media Centre prefects visited the Merensky 2 library on 28 October 2015. Karen Botha, Media Centre Manager at Pretoria Boys High School, sent this appreciative email the email the following day: “We would like to thank the University, especially the library services for a wonderful behind the scenes tour of your library. The boys thoroughly enjoyed every minute and told the rest of the Media Prefects all about it. I already had requests from the others to do the visit to your facility again next year. They were very inspired and we benefited greatly from this visit. Thank you for your hospitality and making us feel so welcome. You are doing an amazing job for the students and our pupils realized the value of your contribution towards making students dreams come true.”


Visitors from different Colombian universities - 3 November 2015


The Merensky 2 library hosted three undergraduate student visitors from different Colombian universities.


From left to right: Alexander Ramírez Perea, Laura Victoria Cepeda Echeverri and Alejandro Escobar Torres


Visitors from  librarians from Sub-Saharan Africa - 4 November 2015


Academic librarians from Sub-Saharan Africa, attended the continuing professional development (CPD) programmes for qualified librarians at the University of Pretoria. They visited the Merensky 2 library on the 4 November and were escorted on a guided tour. Some of the comments received afterwards:


Kwasi Opuni Karikari: “A very impressive library. I was motivated.”

Moses Osamai: “The tour was good, I found out some similarities with our library especially about Reserved Books collection. Thank you for the good work.”

Colette Onyebinama: “It was an interesting tour and the library is so organized. I was so impressed by the research commons for PG students. Merensky library, you are doing a good job. Keep it up.”

Kwaku Agyemang Badu Boateng: “The tour was good. The Merensky Library is well organised. As CPD 5 participant, there was a lot I picked from the tour.”

Lilian Atta-Obeng: “Personally I identified - not only the library was well structured but the building too. The underground is the best place to have the print materials. In this case you walk into the library thinking it is all digital.”


Mr Nathan Bailey and Ms Lisa Marsh from Simplify Solutions Pty Ltd. visited the library’s MakerSpace - 24 November 2015


Mr Nathan Bailey and Ms Lisa Marsh from Simplify Solutions Pty Ltd. visited the library’s MakerSpace.

Colleague Isak vander Walt (on the right) showed them around and answered all their questions.


Contributed by  Elsabé Olivier

10 Tips to be More Grateful in Life

To be more grateful in life means that you are also allowing yourself to be happier, more contented and more satisfied with everything that has been going on around you. But with all the stress, all the disappointments and all the anxiety around you, I bet you ask yourself this question all the time:


“How exactly can I be more grateful with my life?”


Well, my dear friend, I think I have ten tips to help you with this particular concern. Here they are:


1. Learn to live in the moment.

Life is a wonderful adventure filled with enriching experiences and endless possibilities. Don’t just go through the motions of repetitive activities and boring tasks. No! Being a mindless zombie can make you more likely to take things for granted. Instead of doing something just for the sake of doing it, actually make an effort to savor the experience. You’re supposed to attend a conference? Absorb it. Babysit your niece? Savor the moment. Eat a 15-minute lunch? Taste each bite.


2. Make an Oath of Gratitude.

Being aware of your goal to be more grateful can help you look for things to be really more grateful for. Gratitude is a conscious decision. You have to practice it consistently.


3. Immerse yourself with inspirational thoughts and motivational quotes. 

Your feeling of gratitude is a direct manifestation of your environment. If you feel more driven, more passionate, and are also bound to appreciate more, live more, and be more content.


4. Make your own Gratitude Board.

You’ve heard of Motivation Boards, Disaster Boards and Dream Boards, so why can’t you have Gratitude Boards as well? Instead of posting your dreams and your disasters, it’s better for you to post the ideals that you feel grateful for. Just a hint: focus more on people and experiences rather than on materialistic stuff that don’t necessarily last very long.


5. Control your thoughts.

Of course you have the power to control what you’re thinking of! Consider this exercise, for example: if you find yourself thinking more and more self-entitled, stop. If you find yourself repeating negative junk, stop. And if you find yourself comparing yourself to other people, stop. You are given consciousness. Make use of it wisely.


6. Always resist the temptation of comparing yourself with other people.

As humans, we have the natural tendency to compare ourselves with others with the hope of attaining satisfaction. Right now, I’m telling you that this activity does not help you feel to be more grateful in life. It does the opposite! You will always be meeting someone richer, more attractive, more successful and more intelligent than you are. Comparison will just rob you off your self-worth and make you feel inferior to others! Don’t do it, please.


7. Watch your words.

You can feel more grateful in life if you are using more positive and more enlightening words. Words that stress you and make you feel worthless should definitely be eliminated.


8. Appreciate what you have right now. 

The happiest people are those who are contented with what they currently have, not with what they lack. Apply an abundance mindset in your way of thinking – every action begins with the mind, after all.


9. Acknowledge the past, but move on. 

I’m not saying that you should ignore the past, naturally. That’s impossible. What I’m saying is that you should be aware of your past mistakes, past heartbreaks, past failures and past frustrations. Use them as stepping stones. Acknowledge the fact that they did happen in the past and utilize the lessons you learned from them in the present so that you won’t experience them in the future. Be more grateful of the bad as well!


10. Help other people and touch their lives meaningfully.

There really is nothing more rewarding in this world than helping other people improve their lives. This activity doesn’t only make you feel great about yourself – it also makes you value what you have in your life. Go on and sponsor a child’s education. Give your old clothes and books to a charitable institution. Donate your time and offer to teach children for free once a week. Hold feeding programs with non-profit organizations.


Every little thing counts. You have the ability to make yourself feel to be more grateful in your life – never let anybody tell you different.


Remember when you got a raise and bought a new car, and you’ve been happy ever since?: How to Be 25% Happier in Five Minutes a Day


Communication by

Contributed by Diana Gerritsen


Special Collections book of the month




1990 was a historic year for the South African Air Force. The year it commemorated the 70th anniversary of its establishment.



South African Air Force has developed from a small directorate in the Union Defence Force to the fully-fledged arm of service and combat force it is today.




About the book:



The history of the South African Air Force is a chronicle of highlights and achievements. However it is firstly a record of the undivided loyalty and devotion to duty of those men and women who have served in the force, always prepared to make sacrifices.




Source: History of the South African Air Force (1920-1990)
Publisher [Pretoria] : Directorate of Public Relations, SADF,1990.



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