Water notice for upper campus and other updates

10 July 2024

Dear colleagues and students

The University of Cape Town’s (UCT) upper campus will receive water at a slower rate this week due to cleaning and maintenance work on Newlands Dam. Read more about this and other recent developments on campus.

1. Water notice for upper campus

The UCT community is advised that since Monday, 8 July until Sunday, 14 July 2024, the upper campus's water source is receiving water at a slower rate due to cleaning and maintenance work on Newlands Dam. However, this will not affect the water supply to upper campus buildings, as maintenance can regulate the water pressure to ensure a steady supply. The maintenance team will also monitor the incoming water supply while the service to the Newlands Dam is being completed.

The UCT community is advised to use water sparingly during this maintenance period. 

The following upper campus buildings receive their water supply directly from the City of Cape Town and will not be affected:

  • Sports Centre
  • Visitors Centre
  • Botany
  • Centlivres
  • Upper Campus Residence and Fuller Residence.

For more information, please contact Megan Dick.

2. New UCT Council now constituted

The new UCT Council, which has been constituted and all members (30 in total) have been appointed in terms of the institutional statute held its first meeting on Saturday, 6 July 2024. The constituting meeting marked the passing of the baton from the previous to the new Council whose four-year term (1 July 2024–30 June 2028) has now commenced. Council elected Mr Norman Arendse (SC) and Ms Nomarashiya Caluza to serve as chairperson and deputy chairperson respectively.

Council also provided an update further to the campus announcement of 24 May conveying the appointment of Professor Mosa Moshabela as vice-chancellor. Professor Moshabela will now take up the role with effect from 1 August 2024.

3. Opportunity to become a gender advisor for UCT

The Office for Inclusivity & Change (OIC) has acquired funding to train 25 staff members employed on permanent conditions as first responders / gender advisors. Staff will be trained to offer immediate support, containment and referral to the OIC to provide specialist support to the survivor.

With the permission of their line managers, they would perform this role at the university and attend a three-day training from 13 to 15 August 2024.

Interested staff should possess the following characteristics:

  • emotional competence to support survivors
  • confidentiality and willingness to receive disclosures.

To apply, staff members must meet the following criteria:

  • Be a permanent UCT staff member
  • Have at least a matric certificate
  • Be proficient in English and one other official language
  • Be available to attend training on the above-mentioned dates
  • Have permission from their line managers to attend training and support for the request to use some work hours for gender advisor functions (approximately three hours per semester, dependent on the number of people who would utilise the services)

Interested staff members should submit an email to Cheryl Vallay with a 300- to 500-word motivation letter explaining their interest in this opportunity and how they plan to raise awareness about the service offering in their workplace environment and spheres of influence.

4. Update from OHSE on mpox

In light of recent media reports about mpox (formerly known as monkey pox), the UCT Occupational Health, Safety and Environment (OHSE) division would like to assure the UCT community that the overall risk of being infected – particularly the Western Cape – is low.

The symptoms of mpox include rash with blisters (on the face, hands, feet, body and genitals), fever, swollen lymph nodes, headaches, muscle and back aches, and low energy. To protect yourself, OHSE recommends the following steps:

  • Avoid close contact with anyone who has symptoms, especially skin-to-skin contact.
  • Regularly wash your hands and personal items (bedding, clothes, towels, etc).
  • Keep surfaces clean.
  • Wear a mask if you cannot avoid close contact.

As of 12 June 2024, there have been five laboratory-confirmed cases and one death, with two cases confirmed in Gauteng and three in KwaZulu-Natal.

If you suspect you might have mpox, please see a health worker and isolate at home if possible.

5. Access to Mathematica software

UCT has secured a site license for Mathematica, which is available to all UCT students and staff until the end of 2024, offering many benefits for academic and research endeavors. This software can help students improve their understanding of mathematical concepts, perform detailed data analysis, take detailed and interactive notes, and create professional-quality reports and presentations. It can assist researchers in accelerating their research with high-performance computing, streamlining workflow with automated calculations, and exploring new research directions with advanced modeling and simulation capabilities. Mathematica can be applied to a huge range of disciplines, including:

  • Mathematics: Symbolic computation, algebra, calculus, differential equations, graph theory
  • Physics: Modeling physical systems, solving complex equations, simulations, visualisation
  • Engineering: Control systems, signal processing, structural analysis
  • Computer Science: Algorithm development, machine learning, data structures
  • Finance: Quantitative analysis, risk modeling, time-series analysis
  • Biology: Bioinformatics, systems biology, genetic sequencing
  • Chemistry: Molecular modeling, reaction kinetics, cheminformatics
  • Economics: Economic modeling, econometrics, optimisation problems
  • Statistics: Time-series analysis, data visualisation, hypothesis testing
  • Education: Interactive teaching tools, animations, course-note creation.

Staff and students are encouraged to use their UCT email addresses to get Mathematica.

For more information, contact Associate Professor Jonathan Shock.

Communication and Marketing Department

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