Facts & Figures

Rhodes Alumni US Survey

Some time ago our sister organisation in North America carried out an survey amongst old Rhodians to gauge their perceptions of the university and where and how they might contribute to furthering the institution’s recognition and influence outside South Africa. Here are some of the results:

  • 71 percent view their university days at Rhodes as extremely memorable and valuable
  • Alumni say the two top qualities that characterise Rhodes are its unique campus and community setting and the excellence of its academic standards and teaching
  • An impressive 83 percent of all respondents believe Rhodes is at least equal to or better than private colleges and universities in the U.S.
  • While 60 percent of Old Rhodians just don’t have time to help the university, those that do are open to contacting other alumni (25 percent), making referrals and introductions (17.5 percent), or doing public relations (11.7 percent)
  • While 87 percent of Old Rhodians were satisfied with their professional position and lifestyle, 52 percent would be interested in returning to, or retiring in, South Africa
  • An overwhelming 84 percent of Old Rhodians in the U.S. still strongly identify with South Africa or retain affinity and connections with the country
  • Interestingly, 82 percent of Old Rhodians believe their skills and knowledge would be useful and valuable to South Africa and nearly 52 percent would be interested in learning more about expatriate incentives to relocate back to South Africa.

We are planning in the near future to carry out a similar survey in the UK.

Some Rhodes University stats – 2012

  • 7,450 students, over 1,400 staff members, including 350 permanent academic staff.
  • 59% of students are women
  • 28% are postgraduates, rising to 30% by 2013
  • 22% are international students from 52 countries around the world.
  • Rhodes represents less than 1% of the total number of students in public Higher Education (850,000) nationally, and since its inception, Rhodes graduates have often attracted 14% of Mandela Rhodes Scholarships
  • Rhodes has the highest percentage of academic staff with PhD qualifications, outstanding research outputs per capita staff and an excellent students to staff ratio
  • In 2012, Rhodes achieved a 84% pass rate – the highest undergraduate pass rate among South African universities

Measures of Success

  • SKA – Square Kilometer Array: Prof Justin Jonas, Dr Bernard Fanaroff  and Dr Adrian Tiplady, all from Rhodes, played a major role in helping South Africa win the bid
  • Rhodes graduate, Liam Pederson contributed through his work at NASA on the the design of the remote exploration vehicle of the space expedition Curiosity, which landed on Mars on 5 August
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