The UCT Global Citizenship: Leading for Social Justice Programme is a co-curricular programme providing students with an opportunity to engage critically with contemporary global debates and to reflect on issues of citizenship and social justice. While voluntary, co-curricular and not credit-bearing, each of the three courses can be recognised on students' transcripts as UCT Short Courses.
The programme is supported by the University as a way of promoting values of engaged citizenship and social justice among UCT graduates as outlined in the UCT Mission. Funding for the programme has come from the Vice-Chancellor and from the DG Murray Trust. It is therefore FREE to UCT registered students.
The broad objectives of the programme are:
To expose students to a broad foundational knowledge on issues relating to global citizenship and social justice that go beyond the immediate requirements of their professional degree or major discipline.
To develop students' capacity for leadership in contemporary global-political and social justice issues through improving their active listening, critical thinking and logical argument skills.
To promote students' awareness of themselves as future citizens of the world with a motivation to work for social justice through involvement in community service/volunteering.
The programme currently has three inter-linked but separate components:
GC 1: Global Debates, Local Voices workshop series (Semester 1) GC 2: Service, citizenship and social justice service learning course (including 10 hours of community service organised through the course) (Semester 2) GC 3: Voluntary community service – 60 hours (self organised) with a recognised student-run, NGO, faith-based or community-based organisation (Ongoing throughout the year)
Any of the courses can be done at any stage of your UCT career, and in any order.
The programme takes a blended learning approach, so in addition to class sessions (GC1/GC2) and community service visits (GC2), we use online and digital resources to enhance student learning (GC1/GC2/GC3). The exciting and innovative online components of the programme, which encourage the development of students’ ‘digital citizenship’, play a key role in student learning and the programme’s success.
How can I get involved?
Any registered UCT student in any faculty can do the GC programme (or separate components of it) over the course of your degree. While we do have first-year students, the courses are primarily aimed at senior undergraduate and early post-graduate students. If fully completed, each course is recognised as a Short Course on your transcript.
Here is a selection of the comments from students who have participated in the GC courses over the past 5 years:
- An engaging way about finding out about yourself as well as how you can relate to the globe in a positive transformative manner.
- Allows you to think & move beyond the confines of faculty – to think outside the box.
- Challenges the way you think or perceive the world around you. Thought provoking, definitely for anyone who wants to be involved in bigger issues affecting the world It is a cool course where you can learn a lot about yourself and the societal duty.
- It is the greatest experience I have ever had in UCT. For the first time in my academic life, I was encouraged to think and question certain aspects of how the world is the way it is.
- It is an amazing programme which offers academic and practical experience.
- It heals the soul and opens your mind. It is a must do program.
- It is a great space for thought provoking questions and a good catalyst to discovering what your purpose is.
For further information on each of the three courses – and to access to the online application forms – go to www.globalcitizen.uct.ac.za.