Understanding UJ Residence Names: More Than Just Places to Stay

Choosing a university residence is often a significant decision for students, especially those moving away from home for the first time. At the University of Johannesburg (UJ), the residences are more than just places to stay; they are communities that help to shape the student experience. The names of these residences often reflect cultural values, historical figures, and aspirations, giving them a unique identity that contributes to the overall UJ ethos.

UJ Residence Names

Auckland Park Campus

Magnolia Residence

Named after the elegant Magnolia tree, this residence embodies beauty and grace, reflecting qualities often aspired to in academia.

Akani Day House

The name “Akani” translates to “to build” in Tsonga, encapsulating the spirit of community building and collective growth.

Impumelelo Residence

“Impumelelo” means “success” in Zulu, reflecting the drive towards academic excellence.

Moshate Heights Residence

“Moshate” refers to a royal palace in Sepedi, symbolizing a dignified environment conducive to scholarly pursuits.

Lebone Residence

“Lebone” means “light” in Setswana, symbolizing the enlightenment that comes from gaining knowledge.

Karibu-Jamii Residence

“Karibu” and “Jamii” are Swahili words meaning “welcome” and “community,” respectively. This residence is all about inclusivity.

Afslaan Residence

This name pays homage to South Africa’s Afrikaans heritage, representing the diversity within the university.

Maqhawe Residence

“Maqhawe” means “heroes” in Zulu, motivating students to become heroes in their respective fields.

Cornerstone Residence

This residence signifies the importance of laying a strong foundation for one’s academic and personal growth.

Oppierif Residence

Named in Afrikaans, “Oppierif” translates to “on the reef,” underlining Johannesburg’s gold reef history.

Azania Day House

Azania is an alternative name for South Africa, used to highlight the African identity.

Thomas Sankara Residence

Named after the revolutionary leader from Burkina Faso, this residence embodies the spirit of activism and transformation.

Jabali Day House

“Jabali” means “rock” in Swahili, symbolizing strength and steadfastness.

Gloucester Residence

This name traces back to British influence and represents internationalism and diversity.

Falcons Day House

The Falcon symbolizes vision and power, aligning with aspirations to achieve high academic and personal goals.

Faranani Residence

“Faranani” means “come together” in Venda, emphasizing unity and collective effort.

Bunting Road Campus

Ikhayalethu Day House

This Zulu term translates to “our home,” creating a sense of belonging for residents.

Goudstad Residence

The name is a nod to Johannesburg’s historical gold mining industry.

Kilimanjaro Residence

Named after Africa’s highest mountain, this residence aims to inspire students to reach great heights.

Horizon Residence

Signifying limitless possibilities and broadening one’s scope.

Mayine Residence

“Mayine” means “let it rain” in Xhosa, suggesting an abundance of opportunities.

Ndlovukazi Residence

The name translates to “queen mother” in Zulu, signifying leadership and wisdom.

Doornfontein Campus

Abeillies Day House

This name, meaning “bees” in French, signifies industriousness and collaboration.

Gauta Residence

Named after gold, referring again to Johannesburg’s mining history.

Lesedi Residence

“Lesedi” means “light” in Sotho, aligning with the aspiration for enlightenment through education.

Habitat Residence

This name reflects the idea of a nurturing and supportive environment.

Phumlani Residence

“Phumlani” means “rest” in Zulu, signifying the residence as a sanctuary for students.

Robin Crest Residence

The Robin bird symbolizes joy and renewal, qualities aspired to in a learning environment.

Kopano House Residence

“Kopano” translates to “unity” in Sotho, emphasizing a sense of community.

Akanani Residence

“Akanani” means “to come together” in Venda, which encapsulates the residence’s community spirit.

Takalani Residence

“Takalani” means “be happy” in Venda, encouraging a positive living and learning environment.

Soweto Campus

Ulwazi Residence

“Ulwazi” means “knowledge” in Zulu, signifying the ultimate goal of university life.

Pishon of Soweto Day House

The Pishon is one of four rivers in the Garden of Eden, symbolizing abundance and life.

Hector Pieterson Residence

Named after the iconic figure in the Soweto Uprising, this residence honors the fight for quality education.

YMCA Men’s Residence

This global organization’s residence signifies community service and holistic development.

YWCA Ladies Residence

Like its male counterpart, this residence is also linked to a global organization committed to women’s empowerment and community service.

Imbewu Mixed Residence

“Imbewu” means “seed” in Zulu, symbolizing the potential for growth and transformation in this mixed-gender residence.


The residence names at the University of Johannesburg are not merely labels but narratives in themselves. They hold the mirror to South Africa’s rich cultural tapestry, its history, and the aspirations of its youth. Whether it’s the Zulu term “Impumelelo” encouraging success or “Hector Pieterson Residence” reminding us of the sacrifices made for quality education, each name carries a weight of significance.

Choosing a residence, therefore, becomes not just a question of location or facilities, but also of identifying with a community that resonates with your own values and aspirations. In these residences, students find more than just a place to stay; they find homes that contribute to their journey of personal and academic growth.

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