Why I Give to UCT

Dr. Peter Maggs
Dr. John Graham
Trevor Norwitz
Dr. Liam Ratcliffe and Penny Ratcliffe
Stephen Swartz

Dr. Peter Maggs

Photo of me (Dr. Peter Maggs) and my boy Cole (UCT graduate 2032 or thereabouts

Photo of me (Dr. Peter Maggs) and my boy Cole (UCT graduate 2032 or thereabouts

All of us are subjected to solicitations of every sort, from organizations of every type, for contributions to the work that they are doing. And good and worthy work it is, in most cases.  So how does one decide whom to support most strongly? The university that you work at, or that your daughter attended? The excellent private high school that your son attended, or that you yourself attended so long ago? Or the civil liberties or environmental organizations that are so important, the political parties, or the art museums, theaters, cultural organizations? Most of us cannot answer all of the competing calls, and need to choose whom to support most strongly.

After careful thought I have chosen to direct my primary support to UCT.  It seems to me that there are good reasons for this decision that I’d like to describe.

Firstly, it seems to me clear that the need is great at UCT. There are many deserving students whose personal and family backgrounds make it impossible for them to pay the cost of tuition. Some of us benefitted directly from a social system that contributed to the adversities that these students still face today. The system that made it so easy for me to attend UCT is the same one that impeded the education of so many people, and prevented their economic advance. I would like to do something to balance this.

Secondly, it seems clear that the South African government is not in a position to support the university at the highest level, the level at which we remember it, and want to see it sustain.  Help must come from elsewhere, and alumni/ae must be part of the solution.

On a more personal level, I had a great time at UCT. I was privileged in every sense of the word to be there, and I personally benefitted greatly from the experience. I would not be who I am, had I not spent time at UCT.  My good fortune at having attended UCT inspires a sense of obligation to give something back, to express my gratitude, and to help other future students enjoy similar good fortune.

I hope that many of you view your own UCT experiences in similar light. I am sure that you are as proud of the past and current achievements of UCT as I am, and that you too will want to contribute to its continuing and future success.

I hope that you will join me in making a substantial donation to UCT.  Thank you!

~ Dr. Peter R. Maggs (UCT Medical, MBCHB, 1966) Boston Alumnus

Dr. John Graham

Dr. John Graham

Dr. John Graham

I fund two scholarships at UCT Medical School, one in my name and one in the name of my parents, Richard and Winifred Graham.

Neither of my parents attended university and they were sensitive to their loss.  They very actively pushed my brother and me in that direction. This encouragement not only opened the doors to my chosen profession of psychiatry, but also allowed me to step away from the racial prejudice I learned while growing up in Bellville, Cape.

It should be noted that while Bellville was a breeding ground for racism, a distinguished UCT Vice Chancellor, J.P. Duminy, came from there out of a bitterly divided family, and upheld the finest non-racial and liberal traditions of our great university.

It is an honor and a privilege for me to help continue these traditions through my giving.

~ Dr. John M. Graham (BCom 1959, MBCHB, 1965) New York Alumnus

Trevor Norwitz

Trevor Norwitz

Trevor Norwitz

I give because of what UCT gave me. I give because of what UCT is giving to South Africa, Africa and the world.  I give because I can.  And I am thrilled to give to help build OBZ Square because over the years that will give thousands of South Africans the chance to study at UCT and be in a position to give back themselves.

~ Trevor Norwitz (BBSc 1986) New York Alumnus

Dr. Liam Ratcliffe and Penny Ratcliffe

The University of Cape Town was, for us, a wonderful introduction to the academic life and a springboard from which we both launched successful professional careers. We are thus privileged to be able to offer financial support to our alma mater now. We have decided to support the Vice Chancellor’s residence initiative because we strongly believe that making residence life available and affordable to underprivileged students is key to ensuring the academic success of those students.  More than this, as a bricks-and-mortar investment, it will continue for many years to provide a sustainable and income-generating annuity to the university community. We urge our fellow graduates to offer their support to this important initiative.

~ Dr. Liam Ratcliffe (MBChB 1987; PhD 1995) and Penny Ratcliffe (BA 1984; BEd 1989) Connecticut Alumni

Stephen & Sam Davies of JHB – still friends after 45 years. Sonia, my wife is also in the photo.

Stephen & Sam Davies of JHB – still friends after 45 years. Sonia, my wife is also in the photo.

Stephen Swartz

Looking back at my 5 years at UCT (1966-1970) brings on waves of nostalgia. The friends I made, the causes I pursued, and the education I received have never been duplicated. It gives me great pleasure to make a donation so that others may have the same experience.”

~ Stephen Swartz (BA/LLB Law 1970) Atlanta Alumnus

 

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