Becoming a student at the University of Pretoria is a symbol of your excellence. As you embark on your academic journey in your field of choice, you may attract criticism from some students. Perdeby looked at some of the 1213 fields of study available at UP that might be criticised but will be highly beneficial in the future.

Once famed as the noblest of all professions, teaching has lost popularity in recent years. According to the Centre for Enterprise and Development, one of the greatest challenges facing the South African education system is the production of sufficiently qualified, competent teachers who can provide quality teaching for all school subjects and phases. According to a report by the World Economic Forum, South Africa was the lowest ranking of 148 countries regarding the level of mathematical and scientific education. As part of a new generation of South Africans, by entering into the teaching profession you might be able to lead South Africa’s youth to receiving excellent education.

A bachelor’s degree in psychology is not only the first step to becoming a registered psychologist, but will provide you with the ability to begin to understand human nature and behaviour. Currently there are just over 7000 registered psychologists in South Africa, with the vast majority concentrated in urban areas. There is a need for mental health professionals in less developed and rural areas. Many highly successful people possess qualifications in psychology, including the university’s very own Vice-Chancellor Prof. Cheryl de la Rey.

The average South African farmer is 62 years old, and as the years go by more and more youth seem to view a career in agricultural cultivation as archaic and undesirable. Due to a lack of younger agriculturalists, a food shortage could be a problem in the not-so-distant future. Young agriculturalists could come to the rescue and sustain the future of South Africa.

While becoming a doctor seems to be the more glamorous career choice, nurses are in high demand in South Africa. Nationwide, approximately 49% of nursing positions are vacant, with over 44 000 nurses needed in South African hospitals and clinics. The four year Bachelor of Nursing Science (BCur) degree will allow you to become a highly sought after medical professional.

Social Work
A bachelor’s degree in social work from UP is internationally recognised and provides careers in both the public and private sector. Social work is not only key to developing communities and society as whole, but will also help place the world into context. Social work aims to improve the general level of quality of life, and provide social welfare to those in need.

Choosing a career is a complex decision, and a number of factors must be taken into account. Regardless of the career path you may choose, each and every field has unique benefits that will contribute to society.


Photo by: Fezekile Msimang

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