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Monday, 10 December 2018

Honouring the artist within

PROUD MOMENT Dr Conrad Theys receives his certificate from Registrar Nikile Nsababa. PROUD MOMENT Dr Conrad Theys receives his certificate from Registrar Nikile Nsababa. Robin Thuynsma

Dr Conrad Theys received an honourary doctorate at the start of CPUT’s Summer Graduation.

Theys was capped Doctor of Arts and Design by Vice-Chancellor Dr Chris Nhlapo at the start of the third session of week-long graduation ceremonies marking the end of a successful year for CPUT.

In his commencement speech, Theys said it was a great honour to receive the award from CPUT as a citizen of Bellville South for more than 40 years. When first nominated for the doctorate Theys had expressed his pride at the education facilities in the area.

“We’ve got the Goeie Hoop Primary School and I was a teacher at Kasselsvlei Primary. And there’s Kasselsvlei High, Bellville South High and Bellville South Primary. And then we’ve got the University of the Western Cape and we had the Bellville Training College and the old Peninsula Technikon and now we’ve got CPUT.

This is an educational hub and the University of Technology is the biggest in the Western Cape.”

“I was on the board of Bellville Training College hostel and an adjudicator for the exams. My connection with that campus goes far back and come to think of it that campus is calling me back now,” said the ex-teacher who had graduated from Brighton College, Oudtshoorn in 1961.

Theys also called it a welcome recognition of the visual arts and design discipline. “By recognising me as an artist you also recognise the unsung and unknown artists,” he added.

The Cape Impressionist painter spoke about the hidden artistic talent he has discovered over the years working on community art projects and praised the Faculty of Informatics and Design (FID) for their art outreach amongst children in Grabouw.

The 78-year-old spent a good part of the day on the Bellville campus, taking part in a FID robing ceremony where Master’s and Doctoral candidates shared their educational journey and were ceremoniously “robed” by family members.

“When I look at the young people in front of me I realise what a creative force we have in this country. You need to realise that the success of this country relies on you.

“You have to work at your craft, whether that is art or architecture. You need staying power and a strong belief in yourself. CPUT has given you the framework to flourish, so be proud of what you have achieved,” Theys encouraged the graduating students.

Written by Theresa Smith


Provides coverage for the Applied Sciences and Engineering Faculties and the Wellington Campus.