Student Engagement survey and other updates

27 October 2021

Dear students

The University of Cape Town (UCT) is calling on undergraduate students to participate in the 2021 South African Survey of Student Engagement (SASSE), which explores the extent to which they engage in educational activities and behaviours. Read about this and other recent developments on campus.

South African Survey of Student Engagement 2021

The 2021 SASSE collects information from undergraduate students from several South African universities to explore the extent to which they engage in educational activities and behaviours, and the extent to which they experience the institutional environment as supportive and engaging.

This exercise helps to improve curriculum and campus life, and to support student development. The survey will give students an opportunity to talk about how they participate in university life, including  academic activities, their educational and personal growth since starting higher education, and how they engage with other students and academic staff, both inside and outside the classroom. The survey will also provide them an opportunity to reflect on their opportunities to engage in research with staff, to make use of academic advising, peer learning, academic literacy or numeracy courses, the First Year Experience and service learning, among other things.


UCT vaccination site to operate on Saturdays

The UCT Community of Hope Vaccination Centre will remain open on Saturdays, from 09:00 to 13:00, until further notice.

The site is also open every weekday from 08:00 to 15:00. It is located at the university's Forest Hill residence complex on the Main Road, Mowbray. Access to the site is through Broad Street.


Report on the UCT Council meeting of 16 October 2021

During its meeting on Saturday, 16 October 2021, the university Council deliberated on and took decisions on a number of matters. These include a vaccination proposal, revised terms of reference for the Office of the Ombud, wellness break for staff, senior staff appointments, Transformation Report 2020 and Social Responsiveness Report 2020/21, appointment of trustees to the UCT Foundation Trust, appointment of directors to the Board of Food and Connect, and the establishment of an executive committee of Convocation.


Research on campus

With South Africa having exited the third wave and current infection numbers country-wide being low, UCT is now moving into a period of increasingly returning to engaged and ‘in person’ ways of working. This is supported by the promise of the reduced risk and consequence of COVID-19 as people increasingly become vaccinated. This positions the university well to increase research on campus and to re-vitalise interactive and engaged research.

The executive encourages staff and postdoctoral fellows to increasingly take up regular periods of time on campus, to hold face-to-face discussion groups, small scale meetings, socially distanced seminars and put back in place some face-to-face postgraduate supervision.

As part of increasing face-to-face meetings and working to get events up and going again, UCT hosted its 2nd Research Symposium of 2021 as a hybrid event on 27 October 2021.


First year support group

Transition to university can be very difficult. In light of this, UCT Wellness invites first-year students who need support to join its online sessions taking place from 26 October to 23 November via MS Teams.

The sessions will explore social, emotional and psychological challenges. To book a session, email bhrcar002@myuct.ac.za. Please note that there is a limit of 20 students per session.


Reminder: Master’s/PhD parking discs for 2022

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, applications for student parking discs will only be done online. All master’s/PhD students interested in a parking disc for 2022 are invited to add their details to an online list in order to be issued with a P18 parking disc. An annual parking fee applies. The online form will only be made available on the first working day of November, which is Tuesday, 2 November 2021. Please note that there are 100 bays available. Only the first 100 students will be accepted, and once this number is reached the application process will be closed.

To complete the form, please go to the Campus Parking page on 2 November 2021.


Staying safe during exam time

It is essential to remain vigilant and put safety first when studying late on campus. Students are encouraged to make use of the Jammie Shuttle service, which now has buses covering both the clockwise and anticlockwise routes. Shuttles start running at 06:30 each day. The last shuttle leaves Upper Campus at 21:40, and loops to all the residences within reasonable time for the curfew. All the timetables for the Jammie Shuttle buses are available on the Jammie Shuttle website.

When you work in one of the many common study spaces available, keep your valuables and possessions with you to avoid opportunistic crime. Criminals target unattended laptops and cell phones, taking advantage of study-weary minds. If you do walk, please do so in groups and keep your valuables out of sight.

Remain vigilant, look out for each other, report any suspicious activity, and always think safety in everything.


Reminder: Transformation and Inclusion in Higher Education Lekgotla 2021

In line with its commitment to interrogating its progress towards being a truly African university which has rid itself of racism, harassment, hetero-patriarchy, trans/homophobia, xenophobia, and all forms of inequalities, UCT will be hosting the last session of the Transformation and Inclusion in Higher Education Lekgotla 2021 on Friday, 29 October 2021. Five sessions have been held since Monday, 11 October 2021.

The aim of the lekgotla is to connect and share work, best practice and limitations of structured approaches to better monitor, evaluate and track culture change within a student and staff population in an increasingly turbulent world. Reviewing strategies and approaches that continuously measure and evaluate development towards an institution that is accessible to all as a university of choice, is therefore critical.

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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.

Thank You UCT Community

UCT Community of Hope Vaccination Centre

The University of Cape Town in partnership with the Western Cape Government (WCG) have reinforced our commitment to bringing hope to the residents of the Mother City with the launch of the world‑class Community of Hope Vaccination Centre that opened its doors on Monday, 30 August 2021.

The site is located on Main Road in Mowbray – in the Forest Hill Residence – and access is from Broad Street. The site is open every Monday to Friday from 08:00 to 15:00 and on Saturday from 09:00 to 13:00. Please allow time for attending to COVID-19 protocols and arrive as early as possible at the vaccination centre.



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UCT statements related to COVID-19 vaccinations

This is a space created for all formal bodies and structures within the university community to share their opinions on the need for a mandatory COVID-19 vaccine policy. Please note that some editorial judgement may be applied if the received statements go against any constitutional rights, and that no correspondence will be entered into, statements will be posted unedited and as received. Statements can be sent to opinions@uct.ac.za.


 

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.

#UCTCOVIDPledge – social media elements


Customised Facebook frames and Instagram stickers are now available on those social media platforms. Watch the tutorial videos here to see how easily you can show your support for the #UCTCOVIDPledge.

 
 

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.

 

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