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Coordinates: 26°11′0″S 27°59′56″E / 26.18333°S 27.99889°E
University of Johannesburg, Auckland Park Campus
University of Johannesburg, Auckland Park Campus
University of Johannesburg, Doornfontein Campus
The University of Johannesburg (Johannesburg, South Africa) came into existence on 1 January 2005 as the result of a merger between the Technikon Witwatersrand (TWR) and the Rand Afrikaans University (RAU). Prior to the merger, the Daveyton and Soweto campuses of the former Vista University had been incorporated into RAU. The newly emerged institution is one of the largest comprehensive contact university in South Africa, with nine faculties having more than 90 departments, and an enrolment of around 48000 students, spread over five different campuses. It is not uncommon for alumni to still refer to the university incorrectly as RAU.
The University of Johannesburg, established on 1 January 2005, is the result of the incorporation of the East Rand and Soweto campuses of Vista University into the Rand Afrikaans University(RAU) (1 January 2004). The merger of the modified RAU and the Technikon Witwatersrand took place on 1 January 2005 thus creating the University of Johannesburg (UJ). The Technikon of the Witwatersrand was established in 1925. The Rand Afrikaans University was established in 1967. Vista University was established in 1982. UJ has currently four urban campuses spread over the Witwatersrand in use and one dormant since 2007. More than 48 000 full-time students and 2 700 permanent staff makes it one of the largest residential university in the Republic of South Africa.
The incorporation and merger was part of a series of major programmes restructuring higher education in South Africa. The National Plan for Higher Education (2001) set in motion a major revamp of higher education institutions. Consequently there was a reduction of 36 universities and technikons into 23 higher education institutions. As a result South Africa now has 11 traditional universities, 5 universities of technology and 6 comprehensive institutions .
The University of Johannesburg is a comprehensive institution.
- Centre for Visual Identities in Art and Design
- Centre for Education Rights and Transformation
- Centre for Education Practice Research (CEPR)
- Advanced Composite Materials
- Industrial Electronics Technology Research Group
- Mineral Processing & Technology
- Photonics Research Group
- Stream Processing Group
- Laser Research Group
- Water & Health Research Centre
- Centre for Culture and Languages in Africa (CCLA)
- Centre of Social Development in Africa (CSDA)
- Centre for Sociological Research (CSR)
- South African Institute for Advanced Constitutional, Public & Human Rights (SAIFAC)
- The Institute of Transport and Logistics Studies (ITLS) in Africa
- Aquatic Ecotoxicology
- Centre for Plant DNA Barcoding
- Nanomaterials Sciences
- Paleoproterozoics Mineralization (PPM) Research Group
- Sustainable Energy Technology and Research (SeTAR) Centre
- Centre for Catalysis Research
- Centre for Banking Law
For the year of 2012 Webometrics has ranked the university the 9th best in South Africa and 1287th in the world. Up by 892 positions from 2010.
The East Rand Campus (ERC) was temporarily closed half way through 2007 pending proposed redevelopment of the campus, provisionally planned for reopening in 2009.
Logo and Brand Identity
The resultant institution had as a priority to distinguish itself from its previous institutions as a new, adaptable and progressive institution. Early on it was decided that UJ did not want a Coat of Arms and Motto, as are custom with every other tertiary educational institution in South Africa. The administration decided rather to opt for a logo and 'brand identity'. An internal competition was held; where current students could put forward their proposals. In the interim, the previous motto of the Rand Afrikaans University "Diens Deur Kennis" (Afrikaans for Service Through Knowledge) was maintained.
The design of Joey Hifi was chosen as the official logo of the university. Present in the design are 2 hoopoes (upupa africana). The hoopoe is the official mascot of the UJ Sports Bureau. The Hoopoes are reflective of the "coming together" of two respective institutions (originally) and they form the outline or frame of a book, symbolic of education. The hoopoe is also symbolic of freedom, at various levels; personal and social, adaptability and change. The crowned feathers are symbolic of Africa, of which the university places great emphasis in representing. The University has issued a series of highly successful advertisements, which have resulted in critical acclaim.
The University comprises a built-up area in excess of 45,000m2 and the facilities available at the respective campuses include:
- Lecture rooms and microlaboratories
- Sports facilities
- Auditoriums, halls, galleries and conference venues
- Student shopping centres, restaurants and cafeterias
- Campus and health clinics.
- A villa for postgraduate students
- Court rooms
UJ owns an island in the Vaal River, formerly known as RAU Island.
The University of Johannesburg also has an arts centre, comprising a 436-seat theatre, an art gallery and rehearsal studios where the UJ Arts Academy rehearses. This academy consists of the University of Johannesburg Choir (conducted by Renette Bouwer and Sidumo Jacobs), the UJ Drama Company, the UJ Dance Company and the UJ Song and Dance Company.
The university offers many different codes of sport:
As with the former RAU, rugby is a large focus of many students. UJ's competitive sport is regulated by the UJ Sports Bureau. Sport education is regulated by the Faculty of Health Science and Department of Sport and Movement Studies. UJ has made a name for itself excelling in athletics, hockey, basketball and rowing particularly. 2008 Olympic representative Juan Van Deventer was at the time a student. Several players who competed for the South Africa national basketball team at the 2011 African Basketball Championship in Madagascar were UJ Alumni. UJ has numerous sporting venues:
- UJ Gymnasium – located on APK campus; used for various sports
- UJ Hockey Stadium and Grounds – located in Melville; used for hockey
- UJ Stadium – located in Westdene; used primarily for athletics but also soccer
- Grasdak – located in Westdene; used primarily for rowing
- Soweto Stadium – located in Soweto; used primarily for soccer
- Kingsway Campus Auckland Park – contains squash courts, a swimming pool and volleyball courts
Under the same education Act that permitted the formation of the Rand Afrikaans University, so too did it allow for an official "feeder school" to the university. Hence the co-operation of Vorentoe High school. The school had a close relationship with RAU but UJ has since distanced itself from the school. The school borders APK to the south-west and has since become a bi-lingual school, previously an Afrikaans medium only school. Many students of the school attend UJ upon completion of matriculation.
In 2011 the university decided to suspend ties with Israeli Ben-Gurion University, citing the University's support for the Israeli military. The decision was seen to affect projects in biotechnology and water purification. However, two days later, Ihron Rensburg, vice-chancellor and principal of the university issued a statement saying that "UJ is not part of an academic boycott of Israel...It has never been UJ's intention to sever all ties with BGU, although it may have been the intention of some UJ staff members."