March 2023 graduation celebration

23 March 2023 | Emer Professor Daya Reddy

Dear colleagues and students

We have once again come to that jubilant time of the year on our university calendar when we celebrate those who have over the years burned the midnight oil and successfully qualified for their various undergraduate and postgraduate degrees.

We are therefore, with great delight, looking forward to the University of Cape Town (UCT) hosting 15 graduation ceremonies from Monday, 27 March to Friday, 31 March 2023. During these ceremonies, over 5 400 graduands will be capped. This includes 57 PhDs, whose work has in many ways lived up to the university’s vision of unleashing human potential to create a fair and just society.

I congratulate most warmly all our graduands who will be honoured and whose achievements will be recognised during these auspicious occasions. In the same breadth, let me record my appreciation for the role that our academic staff have played in guiding our graduands, as well as the support ably provided by our Professional, Administrative and Support Service (PASS) staff. Parents, guardians, and other family members have also, in one way or another, made significant sacrifices and contributions to ensure the success of their loved ones.

Graduation is a very special moment, and we are looking forward greatly to returning to the Sarah Baartman Hall for a week of ceremonies.

I am also pleased to announce that the university will award high academic honours in the form of honorary degrees to two distinguished individuals: Dr Debra Roberts and Her Excellency ǂXuu Katrina Esau.

Dr Roberts, who will be honoured during the Faculty of Science ceremony on Tuesday, 28 March at 18:00, is head of the Sustainable and Resilient City Initiatives Unit in eThekwini Municipality and has been at the forefront of climate change action and research over the last 20 years in South Africa, Africa and globally. She was the first South African scientist and local government official to be elected as Co-Chair of Working Group II for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Sixth Assessment cycle in 2015.

The second honorary degree will be conferred on Her Excellency ǂXuu Katrina Esau during the Faculty of Humanities ceremony on Wednesday, 29 March at 14:00. Her Excellency ǂXuu Esau is highly commended for her contribution towards language studies and her mission to preserve the endangered culture of the San people. She has dedicated herself to the mammoth task of teaching a largely oral language and the unique traditions of the San people. She teaches at a small school located at the front of her house in Rosedale, outside Upington in the Northern Cape.

All the ceremonies will also be streamed live on the UCT news website as well as through the university’s Facebook and Twitter accounts for those who are not able to attend in person.

We are looking forward to a joyous time of celebration with our students and we wish them all the best as they go out to make a difference in the world.


Emeritus Professor Daya Reddy
Interim Vice-Chancellor

Read previous communications:

Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Please view the republishing articles page for more information.