Dear 2023 UJ students,
The registration process of the University went well, and it is in its successful conclusion. The success of the registration process for both new and returning students to access quality education was made possible because of the commitment and dedication of our staff and students.
Academic work including classes started today, the 13th of February 2023. I, as a member of the Management Executive Committee responsible for Student Affairs, would like to warmly welcome you to the University of Accessible Excellence, Stature and Societal Impact.
To ensure your success and wellness, the University of Johannesburg (UJ) has several initiatives to assist many of our students who ordinarily would not have been able to access education. These include, but are not limited to:
- Setting aside R20 million to assist students with the first initial payment, known as the Registration Fee;
- In addition to the ordinary merit and postgraduate bursaries, we set aside R7.5 million for a bursary fund for Advanced Diplomas;
- While we were still awaiting the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) funding outcomes, UJ Council granted permission for eligible first-time entering students to register without paying the required registration fee. Although the University has not yet received payment from NSFAS for the current academic year, we have advanced meal, book and accommodation allowances for students who are assessed to meet the NSFAS requirements;
- We negotiated with service providers of Privately-Owned Student Accommodation (POSAs) not to evict its students, particularly those with confirmed approvals of NSFAS, bursaries and other sponsorships; and
- The University continues to raise funds to assist academically performing Missing Middle students. Between 2016 and 2022, for example, UJ raised R1.3 billion, which covered tuition and living expenses for 15 800 students.
Furthermore, in support of our students, we have put in place several measures to enable students to excel academically. These measures include the provision of:
- Data, supplementary devices and on-campus unlimited Wi-Fi. The supplementary devices are given to deserving students who did not receive any from NSFAS;
- Well-balanced and nutritional meal packs for deserving students; and
- Online tutorial services to students, including support for students staying in University Residences.
As you are aware, there is always a high demand for academic spaces from prospective students wanting to join UJ. Of course, this is not surprising, given that UJ has, within a short space of its existence since the merger of several campuses, built a culture of academic excellence through the consistent production of dynamic and skilled graduates who can hold their own in a competitive work environment. In 2022, for instance, we received applications from as many as 322 387 Grade 12 learners who wished to study at UJ in this current academic year. The learners were competing for about 10 500 spaces for first-time entering students.
We are proud that, despite the challenge of a growing national demand for access to education, we managed to enrol 100% of students in relation to its approved capacity.
The University is part of all institutional bodies, which constantly look at the best practices and strategies for access to quality education. Engagements with relevant key stakeholders, including the Department of Higher Education, Science and Innovation as well as NSFAS are continuing.
As we focus on the important task of implementing the academic programme, we would like to thank you for choosing UJ to be part of your academic and promising future. Congratulations on being part of the UJ Community, and we look forward to yet another successful academic year. Should you require any support, including for mental and physical health, emotional stability, or your welfare, do not hesitate to contact the relevant divisions and Student Affairs on the campuses.
Dr. Nolitha Vukuza
Senior Executive Director
Student Affairs, University Relations and UJ Sport
Member of the Management Executive Committee