The transition from high school to university academics is never an easy one. Irene therefore has a system in place with the aim of helping with this transition and maintaining an acceptable academic level. The system comprises three key components: mentoring, compulsory study sessions and “stiltetye” or “quiet times.”

Each Irene first year is assigned to a mentor when they first arrive. Mentors are seniors in Irene who are specifically chosen to assist the first years during the trying MAD2 time, as well as provide support and guidance during the year.

During MAD2, mentors take their mentees to handle administration affairs, such as getting student cards, registering laptops, registering and deciding on the relevant modules for their courses, computer orientation, and faculty and bursary information sessions. There are also regular contact sessions during which the first years can ask the mentors general questions which may not have been answered during information sessions.

Irene takes academics seriously…

Once the MAD2 period is over, each mentor group meets regularly in order to provide academic and other support. The mentors also assist in finding additional help if necessary for a particular module, and also suggest coping mechanisms such as time-management workshops.
First years are also subjected to compulsory study sessions each week. The study sessions are currently on Tuesdays from 20:00 until 22:00. These study sessions may only be missed if a valid excuse is handed to the HK of Academics 24hours in advance.

Irene also has “stiltetye.” These are times when excessive noise in and around the residence are prohibited. The times are as follows:
Mondays to Thursdays: 08:00 – 12:30, 14:00 – 16:30, 19:30 – 21:00, and 21:30 until the next morning.
Fridays: 08:00-12:30, 14:00 – 16:30, and 23:00 until the next morning.
Saturdays and Sundays: 13:30 – 15:30 and 23:30 until the next morning.

These times are strictly enforced during test and exam periods, and residents are given heavy fines if they are found to be contravening these times.

In order to keep their place in residence, every Irener must meet the university’s HEMIS re-admission requirements. These HEMIS requirements are explained during a study session, and are also available in the university calendar.

However, these are only help systems, and in the end, each Irener’s academic well-being is up to herself.

Irene’s 1st year academics was the highest on campus in 2013 and 2014. We owe this lovely honor to our extremely efficient mentors and the optimal space Irene provides for a balanced lifestyle.