Celebrating 100 years of Witwatersrand
Posted on August 12, 2022
Our Centenary is a significant opportunity for us to galvanise our community to secure Wits’ place as one of the world’s great universities, mapping a bright future for this remarkable institution and strengthening our impact. We also want to show you who we are, what we can achieve together, and the immense impact Wits University has in changing and shaping society for the better.
A host of events are planned. Join the celebrations!
Parade: 2 September | 13h30
On behalf of Centenary Homecoming, Wits Student Affairs is excited to host this year’s Homecoming Parade complete with floats and a procession around Braamfontein, reminiscent of Wits Rag, the tradition which started in 1922. Come join in the fun.
Entertainment library lawns: 2 September | 13h00 onwards
Main Campus Library lawns
A range of fun activities organised by Student Affairs.
Alumni Welcome Event : 2 September 2022 |17h30 – 19h00
Concourse, Solomon Mahlangu House (formerly Senate House)
Join us for an evening of cocktails to kick off the special Alumni Homecoming Weekend. Collect your Centenary goodie bags and enjoy performances by the Wits Choir. There will be historical displays of Wits artefacts and memorabilia; a visual display of light-based research in the foyer of the Physics Building; a multimedia presentation titled Visible Resonance will be projected on the Wits Great Hall using light drawings, movement and sound by Marcus Neustetter and the Trinity Session between 19h00-20h00.
Yebo Gogga – Coming of Age: 2 – 6 September 2022 |8:30 – 15:00 weekdays, 08h30 – 16h00 weekend
Oppenheimer Life Sciences Building, East Campus
This free interactive science exhibition has a strong emphasis on biology. Learn more about the natural world and sustainable living. The theme this year is Coming of Age. All living things go through various life stages. Often great changes take place before reaching the adult stage. It is an important phase for the continuation of the species, and for many organisms, is a large proportion of their lifespan. The concept of ‘Coming of Age’ can also apply to organisations and the state of knowledge.
Wits Art Museum: 2 – 4 September |Open between 10h00-16h00
Corner of Bertha (extension of Jan Smuts Ave) and Jorissen streets, Braamfontein
Her Eye On The Storm: A tribute to photo-activist Gisèle Wulfsohn
As part of WAM’s year-long focus on women for WAM’s 10th year and Wits University’s centenary celebrations, this exhibition is a visual homage to this important photographer and dedicated social documentarian’s extensive work. Curated by Beathur Mgoza Baker, the exhibition comprises more than 35 years of images covering humanitarian crises and the lives of ordinary and iconic South Africans.
donna Kukama: Ways-of-Remembering-Existing
This is a solo exhibition by interdisciplinary artist donna Kukama and forms part of WAM’s 10th year and Wits University’s centenary celebrations. The title is rooted in Kukama’s ongoing PhD creative research which critiques existing narratives of history and traditional modes of storytelling. The artist will lead a walkabout at WAM at 12:00 on Saturday 3 September as part of Homecoming weekend celebrations.
WJK: In black and white. And read all over.
This focuses on William Kentridge’s artists books and the wonderful art of the Kentridge monograph. The exhibition is about word and image, and all of these books embody the rich visual and textual record of this artist’s diverse creative outputs. On display are the Kentridge publications in the Jack Ginsberg Centre for Book Arts holdings which span over 35 years.
For more info: https://www.wits.ac.za/wam/exhibitions/
Origins Centre: 2 – 4 September | Open 09h00 – 17h00
West Campus Braamfontein
The Origins Centre will be open at no charge over the Homecoming Weekend. A few tour guides will be on site to guide visitors, and exhibitions include:
10 Centenary Objects
Ten iconic artefacts from the Wits Collection of the Earth Sciences Cluster.
Explore ten objects in ten months, each on display for one exclusive day each month.
Origins of Early Sapien’s Behaviour
A showcase of unique archaeological discoveries that have been made at three sites. This exhibition presents the culmination of 30 years of archaeological research in the southern Cape, undertaken by Professor Christopher Henshilwood, Dr Karen van Niekerk, Professor Sarah Wurz and their research teams at Blombos Cave, Klipdrift Shelter and Klasies River. It showcases the unique archaeological discoveries that have been made at the three sites, which were occupied by early Homo sapiens between 120 000 and 50 000 years ago, a key period in the evolution of modern human behaviour. Curated by Petro Keene (Evolutionary Studies Institute, Wits), the displays feature artefacts, artworks, an interactive area, films by award-winning filmmaker, Craig Foster, and a visualisation of the extraordinary lives and innovations of our early modern human ancestors.
For more info: https://www.wits.ac.za/origins/exhibitions/
Adler Museum: 2 – 4 September | Open 09h00 – 17h00
Wits Medical School Campus, 7 York Road, Parktown
The Adler Museum of Medicine was founded in 1962 and preserves the history of the health sciences in Southern Africa, with special reference to Gauteng. The museum contains interesting and invaluable collections depicting the history of medicine, dentistry and pharmacy through the ages.
For more info: https://www.wits.ac.za/health/adlermuseum/
Park Run: 3 September | 07h30 – 11h00
Assemble at The Wits Club, West Campus
To register for Park Run go to https://www.parkrun.co.za/register/
You need to register if you want to get your time, but you don’t need to register to participate. The course starts near the Wits Club/Alumni Office and begins with an uphill run through the centre of West Campus. You run around the Science Stadium and then back downhill to near the start where you take a left turn past the Barnato Residence. The route takes you up a short, steep hill (nick named Hypotenuse Hill) where you turn right into the Sturrock Park Campus. After looping around the Wits football training grounds you return to West Campus, running down the Hypotenuse Hill, and turning right to run behind the Convocation Dining Hall. Once you have passed the pond, repeat the loop around the Science Stadium, ending with a downhill run to the finish at the Wits Club. Unfortunately, dogs are not allowed at this event.
Arts and Crafts Market: 2 – 3 September | All day
Hall 29, West Campus
Browse through an assortment of artifacts, gifting options, vintage and upmarket goods at the special Homecoming market. Or find something delicious to eat among the deli type foods from a range of vendors.
Scholarship board unveiling: 3 September |16h00 – 17h00
Great Hall Foyer (By invitation only)
The Vice-Chancellor, Professor Zeblon Vilakazi, and Alumni Relations will host a ceremony to unveil the Fulbright/Mandela Rhodes/Rhodes Scholarship boards now housed in the foyer of the Great Hall. This is an opportunity to honour and celebrate all recipients of these prestigious scholarships over cocktails.
Music Concert: 3 September |12h00 onwards
Dig Field, West Campus
It’s been 51 years since the first Free People’s Concert was held at Wits in 1971. In the true spirit of the Free People’s Concert, this will be a family day that will have performances that will cater to all audiences. We will have an Arts and Crafts Market, A children’s play area, Beer Garden, Gin and Champagne Bars and of course, a Food Court.
Get your tickets from Webtickets now!
Founders’ Tea: 4 September |10h00 – 13h00
Gavin Relly Green, West Campus (By invitation only)
This special Wits tradition celebrates alumni who graduated more than 40 years ago. As one of the highlights of the year, Wits Alumni Relations is honoured to have the former deputy chief justice Justice Dikgang Moseneke as guest speaker. This year we welcome the Classes of 1980, 1981 and 1982 to their first Founders’ Tea.
SRC Formal Gala Dinner: 4 September 2022 |17h00 – 20h00
Gavin Relly Green, Braamfontein West Campus
A celebration of the illustrious Wits SRC. It will be a look back at how this prestigious structure shaped our country’s socio-political trajectory and the opportunities that lie ahead. All former SRC members are invited to join the evening of reflection and celebration.
Dress code: Strictly formal
Faculty of Health Sciences Alumni Week: 5 -10 September 2022 | Hybrid online and in person
Wits Medical School Campus, 7 York Road, Parktown
View programme and make bookings
The Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences, Professor Shabir Madhi, invites all graduates to the Faculty’s annual tradition. This year’s programme will feature a special sit-down breakfast with the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Zeblon Vilakazi. As well as:
The Alumni Symposium, which provides a unique platform for alumni to showcase their life’s work, research, interests, and passions.
The FSH Alumni Gala Dinner is a favourite social event that was put on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It is a perfect occasion to reunite and rekindle friendships and relationships. The dinner is open to all Faculty of Health Sciences alumni and will be especially honouring the special anniversary years of 10 (2012), 15 (2007), 20 (2002), 25 (1997), 30 (1992), 35 (1987), 40 (1982), 45 (1977), 50 (1972) years since graduating.