Latest News Archive

Please select Category, Year, and then Month to display items
Years
2017 2018 2019 2020
Previous Archive
20 July 2018 Photo Leonie Bolleurs
Research informs about sustainable use of fresh water for food production
Conducting research on the topic of water-footprint assessment, are from the left: Dr Enoch Owusu-Sekyere, Dr Henry Jordaan, study leader and Senior Lecturer in the UFS Department of Agricultural Economics, Dr Frikkie Maré (Head of the Department of Agricultural Economics), and Adetoso Adetoro.

The fact that South Africa is a water-scarce country has been highlighted during the past couple of years, and even city dwellers were suddenly very aware of the drought due to the strict water restrictions. These are the words of Dr Frikkie Maré, Head of the Department of Agricultural Economics at the University of the Free State (UFS) and one of the graduates who received his PhD on water-footprint assessment studies at the recent June 2018 graduations.

The department is currently involved in various water-footprint and water-management research projects which assist in providing solutions for better water management in the future. “As department, we want to be at the forefront of research that will assist all agricultural producers with sustainable production practices to ensure economic, environmental, and social sustainable food and fibre products for the society at large,” said Dr Maré.

Research funded by Water Research Commission

The UFS recently conferred two PhD degrees (Drs Enoch Owusu-Sekyere and Frikkie Maré) and one master’s degree (Adetoso Adetoro) in the Department of Agricultural Economics. All three have been working in the field of water-footprint assessment. The research formed part of two different projects that were initiated and funded by the Water Research Commission.

According to Dr Henry Jordaan, Senior Lecturer in this department, four of his students already received their master’s degrees on the topic of water-footprint assessment, while two students are busy with PhDs and three more are working on their master’s degrees.

Topic gains momentum in research community
The water-footprint concept serves as a useful indicator to sensitise society about the impact of the food we eat on scarce freshwater resources – from agricultural producers using water to produce primary food crops and products on the farm, to the end consumer buying the food products in the retail store in town.

“Water-footprint assessment is a relatively new field aimed at informing the sustainable use of fresh water for food production. This topic is gaining momentum in the research community, given the substantial increase in the global population in the context of freshwater resources that is getting increasingly scarce. The challenge is to feed the growing population while still using the scarce freshwater resources sustainably.

Volume of water used to produce food

“In order to inform water users on how to use the resource sustainably, it is important to know the volume of water that was used to produce the required food products. Through our research, we are contributing to this knowledge by assessing the volume of water that was used to produce selected products, and to interpret the water use in the context of water availability to gain insight into the degree of sustainability with which the resource is used. The results are expected to inform water users, water managers, and policy makers regarding the sustainable use of fresh water for food production,” said Dr Jordaan.

News Archive

Education bursaries awarded to 180 UFS students
2007-08-24

 

At the awarding ceremony were, from the left: Prof. Steve Niemann (Head: School of Education at the UFS), Kaizer Mosupeng (first-year student in Education), Prof. Frederick Fourie (Rector and Vice-Chancellor of the UFS), Mr Enver Surty (Deputy Minister of Education), Danielle Nel (third-year Education student) and Mr Tebogo Lioma (Deputy Director General of the Free State Department of Education).
Photo: Leonie Bolleurs

Education bursaries awarded to 180 UFS students

The Department of Education awarded 180 Fundza Lushaka Bursaries to students in education at the University of the Free State (UFS).

The bursaries were handed to the students today by the Deputy Minister of Education, Mr Enver Surty during a function held on the Main Campus in Bloemfontein.

The Fundza Lushaka Bursary Programme is a multi-year programme that promotes teaching in public schools. The bursaries, valued at R40 000 each, enable students to complete a full teaching qualification in an area of national priority. The recipients are required to teach at a school or provincial education department for the same number of years that they receive the bursary.

“The programme was implemented in recognition and acknowledgement of the educators in South Africa. All of you sitting here today should regard yourselves as nation builders as you will be helping to build communities and a caring society. Therefore it is imperative that you must be committed to teaching and have an interest in working with young people when taking up this bursary,” said Mr Surty.

Mr Surty said the skills required for teachers of today are much different than in the past. “You would be teaching in an environment with mixed cultures and language and must be able to adapt and be willing to contribute to a multi-cultural, multi-lingual and diverse South African society,” said Mr Surty.

According to Mr Surty, the national priority areas include among others African languages, English, Mathematics, Natural Sciences and Information and Computer Application Technology. Although the bursary programme is non-racial, special attention was given to the awarding of the bursaries to women. At the UFS 58% of the bursars are female students, while 58% are black and 42% white students.

Prof. Frederick Fourie, Rector and Vice-Chancellor of the UFS, said the institution was worried about the small number of students who showed interest in the field of education a while ago. “Since the implementation of the bursary programme we have seen a turn-around in the registration of students in education, which is an extremely positive sign,” said Prof. Fourie.

Media Release
Issued by: Lacea Loader
Assistant Director: Media Liaison
Tel: 051 401 2584
Cell: 083 645 2454
E-mail: loaderl.stg@ufs.ac.za
24 August 2007
 

We use cookies to make interactions with our websites and services easy and meaningful. To better understand how they are used, read more about the UFS cookie policy. By continuing to use this site you are giving us your consent to do this.

Accept