Coping through COVID-19: VARSITY newspaper carries on

21 May 2020 | Story Tiyani Rikhotso. Photo Pexels. Read time 3 min.
“VARSITY” has adapted in order to continue to provide a platform for conversation, creativity and collaboration.
“VARSITY” has adapted in order to continue to provide a platform for conversation, creativity and collaboration.

COVID-19 has uprooted lives and shifted the way we engage, work and navigate our days. As a student-run newspaper focused on publishing bi-weekly print editions, there was a lot of uncertainty that came as the University of Cape Town (UCT) announced its campus shutdown. However, the paper has adapted in order to continue providing a platform for conversation, creativity and collaboration.

The main shift has been a focus on digital publishing platforms and driving traffic to the VARSITY website. In addition to sharing its editions on Issuu, VARSITY has partnered with Magzter – a cross-platform, self-service, global digital magazine newsstand – and the newspaper is now available alongside well-known titles such as the Mail & Guardian and City Press. Students can sign up to Magzter to access the newspaper and other freely listed publications.

New ways of work

The paper’s editorial staff has also had to find alternative ways to work and stay connected as the team is dispersed throughout the country. Newsroom, subbing and design have taken on new forms as the team now heavily relies on Zoom, Google Drive and WhatsApp. Despite grappling with the pressures of online learning, the home environment and lockdown restrictions, members of the VARSITY collective continue to dedicate themselves to the work that keeps the paper running.

 

“Members of the VARSITY collective continue to dedicate themselves to the work that keeps the paper running.”

The consistent contributions of writers on VARSITY’s mailing list has also ensured that it continues to publish compelling editions. Those interested in joining the mailing lists and writing for VARSITY can direct message the team through its social media platforms or access article briefs on the Vula tab through the “quick links” section on the homepage.

Creative plans in the works

A “Creative Contributions” section has also recently been added to the paper, where poems, photography and artworks sent in by students are published. Any contributions can be sent via email. In addition, VARSITY hosted a week-long journaling challenge and launched a bi-weekly book club that students can engage with on social media platforms.

VARSITY is currently planning its annual media conference, which will take place digitally due to the lockdown. Shifts in the academic calendar have also allowed the editorial teams to add more editions to the publication schedule.

In the words of VARSITY’s copy editor, Brad Brinkley: “It will take more than a global pandemic to keep us quiet.”

Access the digital versions of the paper.

Read the articles on the website.

Follow VARSITY on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.


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.


Coronavirus Disease 2019 updates

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a global pandemic that caused President Cyril Ramaphosa to declare a national disaster in South Africa on 15 March and implement a national lockdown from 26 March. The intention of these drastic measures is to “flatten the curve” and contain the spread of the coronavirus to enable healthcare workers to more effectively treat those affected. Although South Africa has recently reached a peak of COVID-19 infections, the country is expecting a surge in positive cases in August.

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.

Campus updates

 
  •  Information
  •  Normal
  •  Caution
  •  Alert

Daily updates


Friday, 7 August 11:24, 7 August 2020
Monday, 27 July 14:00, 27 July 2020
Wednesday, 15 July 09:30, 15 July 2020
Monday, 13 July 14:25, 13 July 2020
Monday, 6 July 16:20, 6 July 2020
Thursday, 25 June 10:15, 25 June 2020
Tuesday, 23 June 12:30, 23 June 2020
Thursday, 18 June 17:35, 18 June 2020
Wednesday, 17 June 10:45, 17 June 2020
Tuesday, 2 June 12:20, 2 June 2020
Friday, 29 May 09:25, 29 May 2020
Monday, 25 May 14:00, 25 May 2020
Thursday, 21 May 12:00, 21 May 2020
Wednesday, 6 May 10:00, 6 May 2020
Tuesday, 5 May 17:05, 5 May 2020
Thursday, 30 April 17:10, 30 April 2020
Tuesday, 28 April 10:30, 28 April 2020
Friday, 24 April 09:35, 24 April 2020
Thursday, 23 April 17:00, 23 April 2020
Wednesday, 22 April 14:25, 22 April 2020
Monday, 20 April 17:45, 20 April 2020
Friday, 17 April 12:30, 17 April 2020
Thursday, 16 April 09:45, 16 April 2020
Tuesday, 14 April 11:30, 14 April 2020
Thursday, 9 April 09:00, 9 April 2020
Wednesday, 8 April 15:40, 8 April 2020
Wednesday, 1 April 15:50, 1 April 2020
Friday, 27 March 11:40, 27 March 2020
Thursday, 26 March 18:30, 26 March 2020
Tuesday, 24 March 15:40, 24 March 2020
Monday, 23 March 15:40, 23 March 2020
Friday, 20 March 16:00, 20 March 2020
Thursday, 19 March 09:15, 19 March 2020
Wednesday, 18 March 16:00, 18 March 2020
Tuesday, 17 March 12:50, 17 March 2020
Monday, 16 March 17:15, 16 March 2020

Campus communications


Upcoming UCT virtual events 09:30, 15 July 2020
Pre-paid data for UCT students 14:25, 22 April 2020
Update for postgraduate students 12:55, 20 April 2020
UCT Human Resources and COVID-19 16:05, 19 March 2020
UCT confirms second COVID-19 case 09:15, 19 March 2020
Update on UCT COVID-19 response 13:50, 11 March 2020
Update on COVID-19 17:37, 6 March 2020

Resources

Video messages from the Department of Medicine

Getting credible, evidence-based, accessible information and recommendations relating to COVID-19

The Department of Medicine at the University of Cape Town and Groote Schuur Hospital, are producing educational video material for use on digital platforms and in multiple languages. The information contained in these videos is authenticated and endorsed by the team of experts based in the Department of Medicine. Many of the recommendations are based on current best evidence and are aligned to provincial, national and international guidelines. For more information on UCT’s Department of Medicine, please visit the website.


To watch more videos like these, visit the Department of Medicine’s YouTube channel.

Useful information from UCT

External resources


News and opinions


Statements and media releases


Media releases



Read more  

Statements from Government



 
 

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.

 

TOP