Since the dawn of South Africa's democracy in 1994, higher education has become increasingly important to the citizens of this country. As a result, the University of Cape Town (UCT) – the highest ranked university on the continent – attracts a great deal of attention from people outside the sector: the media, government representatives, politicians and business, alumni, parents and potential students.
This makes it all the more important to provide accurate, well-presented information on teaching and learning, research and the positive effects they bring to our lives. Not to mention news about UCT itself: our governance structures, our relationships with students and staff members, our policies and the platform we provide for opinions that can be controversial as well as thought provoking.
With thousands of people interacting with each other daily, UCT is the size of a small town. Our campus community members work and study in six faculties located on three main campuses, and they serve the local communities in outreach locations around the Western Cape.
Colleagues in the Communication and Marketing Department (CMD) help to hold this diverse community together by organising, managing and communicating a range of activities that inform, educate, celebrate and stimulate the university community.
In 2022, they helped to maintain this vital flow of communication; managed events, meetings and conferences that are a vital part of the life of UCT; kept us all up to date with campus news, the latest innovations in research and education, and the many awards and honours that came to deserving staff members and students; and shared news of ground-breaking research with the rest of the country through mainstream media houses.
CMD brings a broad spectrum of skills and technical know-how to this task: skilful, informative writing; engaging photographs and videos; enhancing the image of the university and its various campaigns through artful branding; managing events that are often complex and may involve leaders and experts from across the world; ensuring the professionalism and accessibility of UCT information online; curating content for the Campus TV platform; creating print and digital publications to support a wide range of university purposes; and producing social media and conventional media communications that bring the milestones of UCT members into the public spotlight.
When critical events happen on campus, they are on the frontlines to disseminate important information that helps the wheels of the university to keep turning. When good news needs to be told – and most of UCT’s news is positive – they produce stories that not only encourage the institution but also excites the world. Their work has proven vital to campus life in so many different situations.
On behalf of UCT, I thank every CMD staff member for all they have done for the university during a challenging year.
Emeritus Professor Daya Reddy
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