The University of Pretoria (Afrikaans: Universiteit van Pretoria, Northern Sotho: Yunibesithi ya Pretoria) is a multi-campus public research university in Pretoria, the administrative and de facto capital of South Africa.
The university was established in 1908 as the Pretoria campus of the Johannesburg-based Transvaal University College and is the fourth South African institution in continuous operation to be awarded university status.
The university has grown from the original 32 students in a single late Victorian house to approximately 49,000 in 2015. The University was built on 7 suburban campuses on 1,120 hectares (2,800 acres).
The University is organised into nine faculties and a business school. Established in 1920, the University of Pretoria Faculty of Veterinary Science is the second oldest veterinary school in Africa and the only veterinary school in South Africa.
In 1949, the university launched the first MBA programme outside North America and the university’s Gordon Institute of Business Science (GIBS) has consistently been ranked the top business school in Africa for executive education, as well as being placed in the top 50 in the world.
In 2012, the Financial Times ranked the GIBS Executive MBA 1st in Africa and 60th in the world.
Since 1997, the university has produced more research outputs every year than any other institution of higher learning in South Africa, as measured by the Department of Education’s accreditation benchmark.
In 2008, the university awarded 15.8% of all masters and doctorate degrees in South Africa, the highest percentage in the country.
The university is commonly referred to as UP, Tuks, or Tukkies and in post-nominals the university is typically abbreviated as Pret or UP, although Pretoria is also used in official publications.
Administration And Organization
As set out in the Higher Education Act No 101 of 1997, the university is governed by the Council with the Vice-Chancellor and Principal, Tawana Kupe, the executive head responsible for the day-to-day administration, and the Chancellor, Wiseman Nkuhlu, being the non-resident titular head of the university.
The Registrar is responsible for the academic administration of the university, as well as legal matters, and is secretary to the University Council and Senate.
The university’s academic activities are divided into nine faculties and one business school. Whilst the faculties comprise 140 departments and 85 institutes, bureaus and centres.
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Residence is provided to students in 24 undergraduate and postgraduate residences and 3 postgraduate-only residences spread over the University’s campuses.
The first students of the Transvaal University College resided in the Kya Rosa, a Victorian house in Skinner Street. In 1915, the first male residence, Kollegetehuis, was constructed on the Hatfield campus and the first female residence, Asterhof, in 1925.
Students not living in a University residence can join one of four Day Houses (Luminous, Vividus Men, Vividus Ladies and Zeus) which gives them the opportunity to partake in organised student life activities.
More than 100 student clubs and organisations operate on the university campus. These include numerous student government, service providers, and service organisations. The most prominent amongst these are the Student Parliament, Student Representative Council, and Constitutional Tribunal (Student Court). The Student Parliament is the plenary body of student governance and determines the wider mandate for student governance.
The Student Representative Council (SRC) is the executive body of student governance and subsequently charters and provides most of the funding for other student groups, and represents students’ interests when dealing with the administration. The SRC is the residential student government, specialising in programming, policy, and facilities and services.
Societies are registered in the following categories as catering for religious, political, social, cultural, academic and other. The Constitutional Tribunal is the judicial body of student governance and adjudicates disputes primarily between student organisations.
Its judges sit on the panel of student disciplinary hearings. The various service providers are the university’s primary programming organisations, serving as a centre of social, cultural, intellectual and recreational life.
The University maintains a long tradition of student participation in sport and recreation. The University has 30 registered sport clubs and 10 academies, in which 9 000 students annually participate in on a competitive and recreational level, more than 1 000 volunteers are involved in sport in various designations and capacities.
In 2007, the university produced 93 Senior Proteas and Springboks and 4 South Africa national rugby union team (Springbok) Captains. The university’s sports facilities, on the Hillcrest Campus, include the LC de Villiers Sports Grounds and the High Performance Centre (HPC), situated at an altitude of approximately 1,500 metres (4,900 ft) above sea level, were developed on an area of 760,000 square metres (8,200,000 sq ft).
The HPC, which was established in 2002, has become the favoured location for the pre-departure camps of Team South Africa in addition to being chosen by several national and international federations as their preferred specialisation centre. The HPC hosted the Argentina national football team during the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
The HPC has a bifurcated role between hosting the TuksSport academies and hosting athletes and teams for pre-season or pre-event training. The HPC includes the Institute for Sport Research, Sport Science and Medical Unit and the Sports Law Centre.
HPC’s TuksSport High School, established in 2002, is an independent specialised co-ed sports school catering for Grade 8 – 12 learners following the National Curriculum as offered by the Gauteng Department of Education. The school is supported by several national sporting federations and allows learners to train and travel internationally whilst staying in school.
Rugby is a particularly popular sport, and there are competitions between residences, faculties, and the University participates in the National Club Championships, Carlton Cup and the Varsity Cup Rugby Union tournament, involving the top 8 rugby playing universities in the South Africa. In the 2012 and 2013 seasons, the university won the Varsity Cup and the under 20 year old Varsity Rugby Young Guns competitions.
The TUKS Rugby League team has their football ground as their home ground.
The University has a very active club that was only founded in 2013. The club is affiliated to Mind Sports South Africa and caters for all the disciplines that are controlled by such National Federation.
The club has had some major successes in 2014, with no less than 12 gamers qualifying for National Team Trials. The club has also become the top university club in South Africa.
In 2002 the University established the Tuks Football Academy and the University of Pretoria F.C. oginally playing in the SAFA Gauteng South Division.
In the 2003–04 season the University acquired Pretoria City F.C.’s second division status, subsequently winning the National First Division (NFD) Vodacom League play-offs and being promoted to the NFD in 2004–05.
In the 2006–07 season the club qualified for the Mvela Golden League play-offs. In the 2008–09 season the club was a Nedbank Cup finalist losing to Premier Soccer League team Moroka Swallows 0–1.
Following the 2011/2012 season the University of Pretoria F.C. will gain promotion to the South African Premier Soccer League (PSL), the top domestic league.