Weekly COVID-19 update and other developments

14 May 2020 | Campus Announcement

Dear students

This campus announcement aims to inform the UCT community about recent Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) updates and other developments on campus.

1. Update on UCT COVID-19 cases

UCT has not had any reported cases of new COVID-19 infections since the last update issued on 6 May 2020. All eight individuals (five staff members and three students) who previously tested positive have now fully recovered.

2. Lockdown letters

In order to foster a sense of community during the COVID-19 lockdown, a new initiative – #UCTLockdownLetters – invites you to share your stories about life and survival at home.

How are you coping as young people under lockdown with your parents, siblings and extended family members? How has the lockdown affected you and your ability to study? What does your study-from-home space look like? What adaptations have you made? How do you cope with stress? How do you keep in touch with friends and fellow students? What will you do differently after the lockdown?

This is your space to express yourself in any medium you choose: in words, prose, poetry, audio, video or pictures. Your contributions will be curated as part of a special platform designed for sharing – and to create a unique archive for future UCT communities.

Please send your submissions to LockdownLetters@uct.ac.za

3. UCT tutorial videos on conferencing and smartphone filming

As the workplace and study environment is redefined and more people are required to work or study from home for the foreseeable future, UCT’s Communication and Marketing Department (CMD) has produced tutorial video resources to assist the UCT community with tips for effective video conferencing and how to create high quality videos with your smartphone. With a focus on remote teaching and learning, there is a need for innovative online solutions. Video is a medium that can allow for higher levels of engagement when operating in a virtual environment. CMD hopes these tips will assist students.

4. Phishing emails on the rise

There have been a spate of phishing emails being sent by external parties to UCT staff and/or students, with the most recent attempt requesting staff member to click a link to approve a salary increase. Upon clicking the link, either a PDF file is downloaded or the recipient is redirected to a malicious website where they are required to enter their UCT username and password. Staff and students are urged to remain vigilant.


Communication and Marketing Department

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UCT’s response to COVID-19

COVID-19 is a global pandemic that caused President Cyril Ramaphosa to declare a national disaster in South Africa on 15 March 2020 and to implement a national lockdown from 26 March 2020.

UCT is taking the threat of infection in our university community extremely seriously, and this page will be updated regularly with the latest COVID-19 information. Please note that the information on this page is subject to change depending on current lockdown regulations.


Frequently asked questions


Commemorating a year of COVID-19

At midnight on 26 March 2020, South Africa went into the first nationwide hard lockdown. A year later, we remember those who have died and those who have been affected by COVID-19, as well as the pandemic’s effects across society and campus. We are especially grateful for the front-line health workers who have done so much for so many.

News and opinions

Campus communications



Media releases

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In an email to the UCT community, Vice-Chancellor Professor Mamokgethi Phakeng said:
“COVID-19, caused by the virus SARS-CoV-2, is a rapidly changing epidemic. [...] Information [...] will be updated as and when new information becomes available.”


We are continuing to monitor the situation and we will be updating the UCT community regularly – as and when there are further updates. If you are concerned or need more information, students can contact the Student Wellness Service on 021 650 5620 or 021 650 1271 (after hours), while staff can contact 021 650 5685.