University is a life-changing time. For good or bad, students are at a stage of life in which they must make choices about what they will do and who they will become. For Christians, university can be an overwhelming mix of excitement and new ideas, along with new pressures and challenges to your faith too. It is a time in which students need to develop deeper foundations and to learn how to live faithfully in church, the workplace and society.

Our goal is to see students change from a having a fragmented, inconsistent way of life to one that integrates the gospel into all aspects of life so that you learn to live coherently and consistently. Change is not just a matter of acquiring better knowledge. Change is about changing the will, changing habits, learning to cultivate better loves.

All of our discipleship programmes are directed at holistic change. They include biblically sound teaching from trained, experienced lecturers, hospitality and shared experiences on our campus, one-to-one mentoring with staff, service opportunities, and much more.

The Fellows Programme

The UCT Student YMCA’s Fellows Programme offers Christian students the opportunity to combine study at UCT with robust Christian education and a deeper experience of diverse student community.

The educational side of the programme runs on a cyclical three-year curriculum, though participants are asked to commit to the programme for a year at a time. Students who wish to complete the full educational programme should aim to enroll in four training modules per year for three years. The core modules are scheduled so as not to overlap with required UCT classes. The modules generally do not include a compulsory workload outside of the session times.


In addition to Christian education, the Fellows Programme offers students:

  • A friendly shared space to study and meet up
  • The opportunity to develop a sense of Christian community with a small cohort of like-minded peers
  • Organised trips and outings
  • Weekly shared meals and discussion
  • One-to-one mentoring
  • Opportunities to put faith into service

There is no charge for the Fellows Programme for UCT students. People outside of UCT may participate in conferences, seminars, courses, etc. for a nominal fee.


Residence-Life Programme (RLP)

The UCT Student YMCA currently has room for eight male and three female live-in students on our campus. The Residence-Life Programme offers UCT students the opportunity to experience their studies in a warm environment and in a community of Christian peers.

The RLP shares all the same elements as the Fellows Programme, but being residential, it comes with a greater sense of community and opportunities for hospitality. The Student YMCA campus is a place of warmth and welcome for all students, and the RLP members have the opportunity firstly to benefit from life in the core of that community, but secondly to live out the Christian mission as agents of warmth and welcome too. RLP students are the main beneficiaries of the work of the Student Y, as well as being its prime ambassadors.

In addition to the benefits listed in the Fellows Programme above, the RLP offers students:

  • The richness of life together within an engaged Christian residence
  • Opportunities to participate in the hospitality and ministry of the Student Y and to explore areas of your gifting
  • Opportunities to engage in student leadership and events management

The RLP is only open to UCT students and the cost of the RLP is limited to a market-related monthly rental fee.


The Gap-Year Programme

As a Christian study centre, the UCT Student YMCA exists to study and understand the relationships between faith, work and society, and to equip students to think Christianly about their role in the world.

Our gap-year programme offers school-leavers the opportunity to investigate fields of study that interest them, to get to know the campus, to visit professionals in the industry, to upscale their study skills in preparation for university, and to deepen their theological knowledge—all of this while still having plenty of time for a part-time job or other personal goals.

The Gap-Year Programme offers prospective students the opportunity to:

  • Get a taste of courses at UCT that interest you and find out about what’s on offer
  • Make contact with professionals in industries that you’re thinking of entering.
  • Investigate your next steps and have fun with a like-minded peer group
  • Take courses along with Fellows and RLP programme members
  • Upscale your study skills in preparation for tertiary education
  • Get personal guidance from trained staff