VC's third GESDA session and other updates

21 July 2022

Dear colleagues

University of Cape Town (UCT) Vice-Chancellor (VC) Professor Mamokgethi Phakeng will host the third of a four-part series themed “Using the science of the future to shape your present”, focused on Eco-regeneration & Geoengineering, on 24 July 2022. Read more on this and other updates below.

1. Virtual discussion on Eco-regeneration & Geoengineering

Professor Phakeng will host a virtual discussion on Eco-regeneration & Geoengineering with experts in the field on Sunday, 24 July at 16:00 SAST.

The planet is warming at an alarming rate, the oceans are being emptied of fish and flooded with plastic. Meanwhile, the human population is set to rise to about 10 billion by 2050, a change that will put pressure on the food systems. The session will offer critical analysis to possible solutions to these challenges and provide thought-provoking discussion on related issues.

Phakeng will be joined by Dr Adriana Marais, Dr Christopher Trisos and Dr Romaric Odoulami.

Be part of the conversation on Microsoft Teams, or on UCT’s Facebook and Twitter accounts.

2. Towards becoming Employment Equity compliant

In May this year, UCT submitted its Employment Equity (EE) Plan and targets to the Department of Employment Equity and Labour (DOEL), and it was found to be non-compliant in three broad areas: low participation rates of staff in qualitative focus groups and quantitative surveys; lack of rigour in the governance of EE Committees and of the university’s Forum; and review of some targets and alignment with the DOEL reporting cycle.

The university is legally obligated to comply with the DOEL’s recommended changes by the end of August 2022. To fulfil this obligation, there are internal processes that need to be completed by 22 July.

Staff members are requested to complete the three steps as outlined below.

Please email Glenda Kayster for enquiries.

3. Submission of proposals to IT Investment Committee

UCT is reconvening the Information Technology Investment and Prioritisation Committee (ITIPC). It is a sub-committee of the university’s IT governance committee – the University ICT Committee.

The ITIPC did not convene in 2020 and 2021, following a decision taken by the University Finance Committee to temporarily limit capital investments due to the need to re-prioritise institutional expenditure owing to the financial impact of COVID-19.

The primary objectives of the ITIPC are to:

  • qualify and quantify IT investment requests; and
  • prioritise and recommend IT investments to the university’s Resource Allocation Advisory Group (RAAG).

These objectives are achieved by assessing and evaluating IT investment requests, in the form of completed project proposals.

The deadline for submission of project proposals is 29 July 2022.

4. UCT’s new learning platform in pilot phase

The university’s new digital learning platform, Amathuba, is currently in a pilot phase of implementation. The Centre for Innovation in Learning and Teaching is excited to report that there are approximately 50 pilot courses from across faculties that will be ready to be offered using Amathuba in July 2022.

Training for tutors and students enrolled in these courses will be offered via webinars. There is also an orientation module available for student self-teaching on the Amathuba learning platform.

6. ICTS scheduled maintenance on Sunday, 24 July

Please note that on Sunday, 24 July there will be an Information and Communication Technology Services (ICTS) scheduled maintenance slot from 08:00 to 17:00. All ICT services other than UCT email and other Microsoft 365 services will be unavailable for the duration of the maintenance slot.

Please remember to consult the scheduled ICTS maintenance slots before planning any teaching, conferences, meetings, etc that require ICT services.

For more information, see an article on why ICTS schedules regular monthly maintenance slots.

Communication and Marketing Department

In July 2022, the University of Cape Town (UCT) revised its approach to managing the COVID-19 pandemic on UCT campuses in 2022.
Read the latest document available on the UCT policies web page.

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