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During the 2020/2021 period there was a greater focus on governance related matters and the average number of meetings and consultative sessions nearly tripled from average six to sixteen meetings, covering policy reviews (Alumni Association constitution and Alumni Awards policy), vision 2030 sessions (in collaboration with the Institutional Planning Office) and naming and renaming consultations (in collaboration with the Arts, Culture and Heritage Office). Council also approved the University’s Vision 2030 strategic plan in April 2021. 

Members of the Alumni Association approved amendments to the Constitution at a meeting of the Association on 14 September 2021. The review of the Constitution was extensive and makes provision for a new era of alumni governance including the use of electronic communication to make decisions and more cost-effective member communication. The amended Alumni Association constitution was submitted to Council for approval at its December 2021 meeting.

The online engagement opportunities which include social media and webinars allowed for greater national and international member participation although time zones are an impacting factor. There has been an increase in social media posts due to an increase in open online event invitations as well as an increase in online story sharing activity. A mix or hybrid of online and physical meetings, consultative sessions and engagements will be part of future event planning. The online highlight of the year was most definitely the launch of Mandela Alumni Connect, the online alumni networking platform. We encourage members to join the platform or read more about it on the alumni website.

The Alumni quarterly e-newsletter format was redesigned during 2021 and the annual alumni and friends’ magazine, Thetha, was published in a digital flipbook format. The social media connections and interactions also contributed to a greater awareness of institutional activities and publications. The Alumni Awards online ceremony and related social media posts contributed to the best social media activity on Facebook, YouTube and LinkedIn for the year.

The Alumni Association Shop suffered a decline of nearly fifty percent in turnover in 2020 which improved in 2021 but was still lower than the 2019 figures. The 2021 increase was due to the launch of an online Shop in 2021 as well as increased marketing and communication activities which improved turnover from R4m in 2020 to over R6m in 2021. The Shop remain a major brand development tool.

Alumni support for events, story sharing, platform connections and the University Shop are always appreciated. Thank you very much for all the interactions during 2021. Your alma mater appreciated your support!

Visit our websites below:

Alumni Relations -

Mandela Alumni Connect -

University Online Shop -