About the University of Cape Town

The United States and University of Cape Town Connection

Introducing the University of Cape Town Fund, Inc. (USA)

Incorporated in 1984, the University of Cape Town Fund, Inc., is an independent non-profit chartered under the laws of New York State, and recognized by the U.S. Internal Revenue Service as a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization. In compliance with IRS regulations, the Board of Directors of the UCT Fund, Inc. maintains complete discretion over allocation of donations to the University of Cape Town. Gifts to the UCT Fund qualify for an income tax deduction to the limits covered by the law.

UCT Fund History

The University of Cape Town Fund, Inc. was incorporated in 1984 under the New York Not-for-Profit Corporation Law. The late Alan Jay Pifer, former President of the Carnegie Corporation was the founding Chairman of UCT Fund, until his retirement in 1992. Under Mr. Pifer’s leadership, Carnegie Corporation developed its objectives toward the prevention of educational disadvantage, social diversification and equal rights in higher education. These objectives complemented the education mission of the University of Cape Town and its United States representation through the UCT Fund, Inc.

Though the years, the Directors of UCT Fund have supported the University’s commitment to enhancing access and providing financial support for disadvantaged students at UCT and in South Africa. More recently, the Fund has helped to secure funding for collaborative programs and various initiatives to transform the staff and student body at UCT.

Mission and Purpose

Supporting the University of Cape Town in the United States
The corporation’s mission is to promote awareness and raise financial support for the University of Cape Town, South Africa’s oldest university and one of Africa’s leading teaching and research institutions. UCT Fund seeks donor support in the United States for scholarships on a non-discriminatory basis to UCT students, grants to UCT’s faculty and programs in South Africa, the UCT endowment and capital projects on campus. Since its incorporation, the UCT Fund has provided substantial funding to the University through its generous individual donors, alumni, foundations and corporations.

In addition to fundraising, UCT Fund serves its alumni and friends of UCT with an array of outreach initiatives. Throughout the year, UCT Fund hosts gatherings in major cities and communicates through social media to encourage networking among alumni, friends and other members of the South African community in the United States.

About the University of Cape Town

Founded in 1829, the University of Cape Town is South Africa’s oldest university, and one of the world’s leading teaching and research institutions.  Presently UCT has more than 60 specialist research units and more than a quarter of South Africa’s A-rated researchers and 100,000 alumni, including the late Dr. Christiaan Barnard, a world-renowned heart surgeon, and three Nobel laureates.

With its rich history and reputation for academic excellence, UCT has steadily attracted global attention, particularly here in the United States. Major U.S. foundations and organizations seek the expertise of UCT’s distinguished researchers and alumni, many of whom are global leaders in their field making outstanding contributions to society. More than 50 leading U.S. educational institutions currently partner with UCT for international student exchange programs that further enrich the academic, social and cultural diversity of its students. Read more about UCT by Vice-Chancellor Dr. Max Price.


UCT aspires to become a premier academic meeting point between South Africa, the rest of Africa and the world. Taking advantage of expanding global networks and our distinct vantage point in Africa, we are committed, through innovative research and scholarship, to grapple with the key issues of our natural and social worlds. We aim to produce graduates whose qualifications are internationally recognised and locally applicable, underpinned by values of engaged citizenship and social justice. UCT will promote diversity and transformation within our institution and beyond, including growing the next generation of academics.

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