Dear colleagues and students
This campus announcement aims to inform the UCT community about recent developments on campus.
1. New website for UCT art collection
UCT houses a collection of some 1700 artworks – many of which representing the work of South Africa’s most noted artists, as well as the art of emerging talents. The collection is exhibited throughout UCT’s four campuses, dispersed among buildings, offices, lecture halls, passages and plazas. The Works of Art Committee is proud to announce that the collection now has, for the first time in its 42-year history, a dedicated website.
2. Resumption of Jammie Shuttle service and new app
A limited number of Jammie Shuttles started operating on 1 September to cater for staff and students who have been invited back to campus. The routes currently provided for are Claremont, Hiddingh, Faculty of Health Sciences, Mowbray and student residences.
For ease of commuting, UCT in partnership with GoMetro is launching a mobile/cellphone Jammie Shuttle App which will be available from 7 September. It will provide timetables and real-time information on the Jammie Shuttles, including the expected time of arrival at each bus stop on any given route, allowing the user to reduce waiting time. The app will also display bus movements on a map, and this information will be updated in real-time, thus ensuring that notices for delays or incidents are immediate.
The app has many more features and functions that aim to create a good experience for staff and students using the Jammie Shuttle. It will also link to Metrorail and other transport networks to allow for a better commute.
To download and register for the app, use your standard UCT system login details (staff/student number and current password).
For support in setting up or using the app, please contact 021 650 5289 (office hours), 021 650 2222 / 080 650 2222 (after hours), firstname.lastname@example.org.
3. How does changing the medium change the way of doing things?
COVID-19 has radically changed the way that universities do everything: research, teaching, social responsiveness and internationalisation – with most activities now taking place on virtual platforms. Join Vice-Chancellor Professor Mamokgethi Phakeng as she hosts the last session in the Unleashing the New Global University series. The session, to be held on Monday, 7 September 2020 from 17:30 to 19:30, will creatively address how more equal relationships might be formed, and how digitally mediated forms of global engagement might enable what Nancy Fraser calls “participatory parity”.
4. COVID-19 update
The university has 96 reported COVID-19 cases among the non-health sciences staff members as at 1 September. There has been 78 staff recoveries reported. UCT has 35 reported student cases, including 10 Faculty of Health Sciences students on clinical platforms. The number of members of the UCT community sadly lost due to the pandemic remains 10 – nine staff and one student.
5. Responding to Level 2 COVID-19 regulations
UCT has developed a framework for identifying which students and staff may return in a phased approach, and this is being implemented by invitation only, after the necessary health assessments have been concluded and after formal authorisation has been granted. Very strict monitoring, social distancing and other health regulations will be in place for those returning. No other student or staff member, apart from those identified, will be able to return.
6. Inaugural UCT Open Textbook Award
Nominations are open for the inaugural UCT Open Textbook Award, which aims to incentivise innovation in teaching and learning, recognise the efforts of open textbook authors and promote the creation and reuse of open educational resources. The UCT Open Textbook Award carries a value of R30 000 and may be shared between more than one recipient. There is no time limit in terms of the publication date. The deadline for nominations is 30 September 2020.
7. Latest phishing attack
The UCT Computer Security Incident Response Team is currently investigating a new phishing attempt, which pretends to be from Microsoft. The email entitled ‘Your mailbox requires update’ urges users to update their mailbox or else it will be deactivated. Staff and students are urged to remain vigilant against this kind of phishing attempts.
8. Updating contact details for the UCT switchboard
One of the impacts of the lockdown has been on the way people contact departments – with some of the pre-lockdown communication channels no longer proving effective for some departments. Departments whose contact details have changed – either general numbers or numbers of key individuals – are requested to please let the switchboard know. This will greatly assist the switchboard and callers to reach such departments efficiently and effectively. Updated contact details (extension numbers, cellphone numbers and/or email addresses) should be sent to email@example.com.
Read previous communications:
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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.
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.
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.
As the COVID-19 crisis drags on and evolves, civil society groups are responding to growing and diversifying needs – just when access to resources is becoming more insecure, writes UCT’s Prof Ralph Hamann.03 Jul 2020 - 6 min read Republished
The Covid-19 crisis has reinforced the global consequences of fragmented, inadequate and inequitable healthcare systems and the damage caused by hesitant and poorly communicated responses.24 Jun 2020 - >10 min read Opinion
Our scientists must not practise in isolation, but be encouraged to be creative and increase our knowledge of the needs of developing economies, write Professor Mamokgethi Phakeng, vice-chancellor of UCT, and Professor Thokozani Majozi from the University of the Witwatersrand.09 Jun 2020 - 6 min read Republished
South Africa has been recognised globally for its success in flattening the curve, which came as a result of President Ramaphosa responding quickly to the crisis, writes Prof Alan Hirsch.28 Apr 2020 - 6 min read Republished
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.