Universities South Africa offers a leadership and management training programme called HELM (Higher Education Leadership and Management). HELM is aimed at professionals in middle management positions (academic and non-academic) within the university sector who exhibit management and leadership potential. HELM builds the capacity of its candidates for the benefit of all our member universities.

The objectives of HELM are to:

  • Enhance the leadership and management competence of middle management staff members;
  • Expand the pool from which senior leaders and managers could be drawn;
  • Contribute to the transformation of existing leadership and management staff profiles;and
  • Contribute to improved effective leadership and management practices.

Over the years, HELM Fellows have been sharing their opinion on programme outtakes and outcomes, as well as their own career aspirations post this intervention.

Click here for anecdotes of Fellows who underwent the HESA/ American Council on Education (ACE) Exchange programme between 2003 and 2008.

Click here for testimonies from the 2011 cohort.

Click here for first-hand feedback from the 2012 Fellows.

Click here for the story of the Class of 2013.

Until 2015, the structure of the HELM programme varied from year to year depending on the expressed needs of our members, availability of funding and other factors. Due to funding constraints, courses were last offered in 2015 as USAf explored options for the programme continuity and sustainability.  Resulting from that process, a concept proposal for further developing and expanding the programme over a five-year period was presented to and supported by the USAf Board in March 2016.

Thanks to a grant secured from the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) to roll out the programme during 2017, USAf will be able to design and pilot-test content assembled for a Postgraduate Diploma in Higher Education Leadership and Management and refine it before implementing fully-fledged training. The grant also provides for workshops and seminars on topical issues.

Institutions will in due course be invited to nominate the next cohort of HELM fellows targeting deans, their deputies, executive directors and directors. HELM continues to target both academics and individuals in administrative leadership.