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Our people

Wits has nurtured over 200 000 graduates who have made and continue to make their mark in South Africa and around the world.

Wits University nobel laureates,national order recipients and alumni


Aside from the four Nobel prize winners and 91 prestigious Rhodes Scholars emanating from Wits, the University has served as the foundation for entrepreneurs, activists, social scientists, leading business and legal stalwarts, musicians, artists, scientists, engineers, doctors and sportspersons.

Wits University National Order Recipients

Nobel Prize winners
  • Aaron Klug- (BSc, honorary DSc) 1982 Nobel Prize in Chemistry
  • Nadine Gordimer - (honorary DLitt) 1991 Nobel Prize in Literature
  • Nelson Mandela - (honorary LLD) 1993 Nobel Peace Prize
  • Sydney Brenner - (BSc, BSc Hons, honorary DSc) 2002 Nobel Prize in Medicine
National Order recipients
  • Helen Suzman
  • Dr Beyers Naude
  • Nadine Gordimer
  • Prof. Phillip V Tobias
  • Prof. E’skia Mphahlele
  • Ahmed Kathrada
  • Advocate George Bizos
  • Justice Arthur Chaskalson
  • Justice Ismail Mahomed
  • Sir Basil Schonland
  • Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela
  • Olive Schreiner
  • Prof. Jeanne Zaidel-Rudolph
  • Hugh Masekela
  • Lord Joel Joffe
  • Jonathan “Johnny” Clegg
  • Prof. Christopher John Robert Dugard
  • Prof. Barry Schoub
  • Prof. Apollon B Davidson
  • Prof. David Lewis-Williams
  • Prof. Helen Rees
  • Prof. Thokozani Majozi