How TUKS, a heavyweight in vet science, is harnessing alumni to boost funding

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Universities globally, like Harvard, are significantly funded by their alumni, with Harvard’s endowment reaching over $50 billion in 2022 due to philanthropy. In South Africa, however, universities face financial challenges due to substantial government spending cuts and tuition fee increase restrictions. This has led the University of Pretoria (TUKS) to diversify its income streams through a financial sustainability plan. Rikus Delport, the Director of Institutional Development, revealed to Biznews that UP is learning from the success of US universities in garnering financial contributions from alumni. Consequently, UP is establishing overseas foundations to encourage TUKS alumni to contribute financially. The first foundation was set up in the US, followed by one in the UK, with plans to expand further. Delport explained that the funds raised would support the ‘missing middle’ - individuals ineligible for state grants and whose parents, such as nurses, policemen, or teachers, cannot afford university tuition. He also commented on the ongoing turmoil at UP, stating that universities often mirror broader societal issues and face challenging times. Delport highlighted the high demand for admission at UP, with 60,000 applications received from first-year students this year, but only 8,500 could be accommodated. Internationally, TUKS researchers are known for their heavyweight contributions to veterinary science. One of the milestones in veterinary healthcare was the first-ever successful CT scan of a live adult rhino for a tooth root abscess that was treated successfully. The faculty also hit the international headlines when it scanned a 210 kg gorilla.
27 Feb 5AM English South Africa Investing · Business News

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