Today, the South African research vessel SA Agulhas II departs from Cape Town bound for the Southern Ocean and Antarctica’s winter sea ice. Onboard will be 25 researchers from the University of Cape Town (UCT), joining 70 participants from South Africa and the rest of the world. Associate Professor Marcello Vichi, from the Department of Oceanography is the cruise's chief scientist and Dr Katje Altieri and Dr Sarah Fawcett, also from the Department of Oceanography are principal investigators.
Professor Peter Ryan, from the FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology at UCT says that while we should do all we can to limit the amount of waste plastic entering the environment, we cannot afford to allow the focus on plastic to detract from tackling the challenges that threaten our very existence,as well as that of millions of other species, such as the climate crisis, consumerism and human population growth.
Home to approximately 2 600 students, of which some 36% are postgraduate research students registered in the 12 academic departments – Archaeology, Astronomy, Biological Sciences, Chemistry, Computer Science, Environmental & Geographical Science, Geological Sciences, Mathematics & Applied Mathematics, Molecular & Cell Biology, Oceanography, Physics and Statistical Sciences.
Undergraduate teaching is a cornerstone of our activities and the Faculty offers 21 different majors, with possibilities to co-major in subjects located in other Faculties. Our majors are loosely organised into three clusters – those in the biology, earth and environmental sciences, those in the chemical and molecular sciences, and those in the numerical and physical sciences. Our Bachelor of Science degree leads naturally on to a number of different Honours degrees that relate to the undergraduate major(s) offered by the various departments.
The Faculty of Science prides itself on the high regard in which it is held by the international academic community, reflected in part by international world university and subject rankings. According to the latest QS rankings, the Science Faculty at UCT places in the band 51-100 top universities in the Earth and Marine Sciences and in the band 101-150 in the Biological and Environmental Sciences.
The Faculty prides itself on its strong teaching programmes, at both undergraduate and postgraduate level, and on the strength of its research enterprise. With well developed international links with researchers across the world, the Faculty is a major contributor to cutting-edge, globally relevant research. Susan Bourne Interim Dean: Faculty of Science