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Professor Brian O’Connell

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Professor Brian O’Connell

Professor Brian O’Connell (VC and Rector, UWC) completed a BA degree and a University Education Diploma from UNISA and UWC. He then obtained a BA (Hons) in History from UNISA (with distinction), an MA and MEd Degrees from Columbia University in New York. O’Connell started teaching at Florida High School in Ravensmead in 1970 until 1977, when he left to take up the post of vice-principal at Belhar Senior Secondary School. Three years later he was appointed principal of Kleinvlei Senior Secondary. In 1985, he was appointed to the position of senior lecturer at UWC. He held that position until 1988 when he was appointed Rector of the Athlone College of Education, in Paarl. In 1991, he was appointed Director of the School of Education at Peninsula Technikon and also became Director of the Institution’s Academic Development Programme. In 1994, he became acting Vice-Rector, with responsibility for Student Affairs. Before being appointed Rector of UWC, Brian O’Connell was Head of the Western Cape Education Department, from 1995 to October 2001. He has chaired many community organizations and served on many boards, committees and task teams including the South African Qualification’s Authority. He also represents the South African Universities. For the past eight years he has been Chairman of the National Access Consortium Western Cape (NACWC). He currently chairs the Community Chest, an affiliate of the United Way International, and the Institute for Justice and Reconciliation. Professor O’Connell has also played a number of sports at national and provincial levels.