Implications of closure for UCT

29 September 2016 | Story by Newsroom

The consequences of an extended shutdown at UCT will be far reaching and devastating – not just for individual students but for the nation as a whole.

  • Current students will not be able to progress from one academic year to the next, causing a blockage in the intake of new first-years.
  • Final-year students will not be able to graduate. This means that doctors, nurses, engineers, teachers and many other would-be professionals will not be able to start jobs, or help communities that are reliant on crucial services, for example the healthcare sector.
  • If postgraduate courses are unable to progress, and students can't complete their coursework, funding and bursaries will be wasted for the current year and may not be granted again.
  • Much of UCT's most important research – such as HIV, TB and malaria – is reliant on valuable research contracts. In a prolonged shutdown, research output would stop, resulting in contractual breach. Funders would have the right to demand refunds and could potentially restrict future funding.
  • In terms of attracting international students, a shutdown would adversely affect UCT's global reputation as a reliable provider of high-quality education.
  • 2017's student-fee revenue would be delayed and would cause a cash-flow crisis, with outflow quickly outpacing inflow.
  • A revised budget would have to be compiled in order to deal with the shortfalls and a deficit budget could become a reality.

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