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Interim COVID-19 Vaccination Policy for UWC

Dear UWC Community

IMPORTANT - Interim COVID-19 Vaccination Policy for UWC

After a lengthy consultative process and robust engagement on the content of the draft "INTERIM COVID-19 VACCINATION POLICY FOR THE UNIVERSITY OF THE WESTERN CAPE FOR 2022", the Interim Policy was approved by the Council of the University of the Western Cape on Thursday, 25 November 2021.

The Interim Policy highlights that the majority of stakeholders have advocated for the resumption of in-person learning and teaching. A return to Campus would accord with the University’s mandate to provide learning and teaching, and serve the interests of students in enjoying all the benefits of university life as part of their holistic experience.

In terms of the Interim Policy, a general Soft Mandate will apply whereby all staff and students will have to be vaccinated in order to enter campus or attend University events. Students who are not vaccinated will be permitted to register for their relevant degree or module but may not enter campus or attend University events. This rule will also be strictly applied to the placement of students at all UWC residences.

The Soft Mandate may not apply to students and staff in certain faculties or programmes, e.g. the Faculty of Dentistry, and programmes such as Nursing and Pharmacy, among others. In such instances the Hard Mandate will apply, which will require students to be vaccinated in order to register at UWC.

More information on each faculty's mandate can be found by visiting the relevant faculty's Overview page, by clicking the links below: Flexible online learning and teaching will continue in most faculties for 2022.

Students, staff, service providers and visitors may apply for an exemption from the policy based on verifiable medical, constitutional or religious grounds. Please click the link at the foot of this page for further details on the application process. Email the completed application for consideration to All enquiries can be directed to the same email address. 

UPDATE (4 March 2022)

The UWC Interim COVID-19 Vaccination Policy is under constant review.

The University's Executive Management Committee has approved amendments to the Policy of an operational or clarifying nature, which are detailed below and marked in yellow on the attached policy document, included for your reference:
  • Paragraph 7.3 of the Policy was amended by changing the 1 March 2022 date to 30 March 2022. Under these circumstances, students registered for modules where a hard vaccine mandate is applicable and are not fully vaccinated will not be deregistered before 31 March 2022.
  • A virtual meeting is incorporated into 11.9 that will allow the Appeals committee to call the Applicant to make verbal representations; and,
  • Clarification is provided in relative to a particular example.
  • The Interim Policy will be reviewed in the first semester of 2022.
Please note that the University’s position is subject to any change in the national COVID-19 regulations.