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02 May 2018 Photo Charl Devenish
South Campus UAP celebrates 27 years of access to education
Mr Francois Marais, Prof Kalie Strydom, Prof Daniella Coetzee (South Campus Principal), Prof Francis Petersen, Dr Nthabeleng Rammile (Vice-Chairperson of the UFS Council), and Dr Khotso Mokhele (Chancellor of the UFS).

More than 27 years ago, international funding from the Human Sciences Research Council and Anglo American was put to an unusual use for that time. Prof Kalie Strydom’s research unit at the University of the Free State (UFS) was tasked with reviewing how institutional missions would change in the new South Africa. Prof Strydom worked closely with surrounding communities in Bloemfontein to develop a bridging course which would help students who showed potential to access tertiary education, although they did not meet the requirements. His vision brought to birth the University Access Programme (UAP), as it is known today, which is hosted on the UFS South Campus, and is still providing unique access to higher-education institutions in South Africa.

People with a passion for human development
March 2018 saw the 27th anniversary of this remarkable initiative, which has given a second chance to over 18 000 students. Special guests at the event included Prof Strydom, Mr Francois Marais, and representatives from the Department of Higher Education and Training and Investec’s corporate social investment office.

Dr Sonja Loots, researcher in the UFS Centre for Teaching and Learning (CTL), singled out two key individuals in the formation of the UAP: Prof Kalie Strydom, who initiated the programme, and Mr Marais, who has been Director of the UAP since its inception. Dr Loots highlighted one of the driving forces behind Prof Strydom’s perseverance, vision, and determination with the UAP by quoting from an interview with him for an upcoming book on student access and success. He said, “It was a decision based on principle … to be part of the solution to a better country.”

Access and success still an issue today
In his presentation on the “Importance of Access”, Prof Francis Petersen, Rector and Vice-Chancellor of the UFS, pointed out the vital role of access in South Africa, especially the value it offers for the betterment of the country’s people. However, he said that student success is also an issue, and institutions need to be accountable for it. Quoting Prof John Martin of the University of Cape Town’s Faculty of Engineering, “We must be flexible on access, but robust on success.” Only by “closing the loop” in this way, can the UFS and other higher-education institutions ensure a valuable contribution to the economy of the country.

News Archive

Mr Naka Drotské is Kovsie Alumnus of the Year
2006-03-03

Alumni of the University of the Free State (UFS) appointed Mr Naka Drotské as Kovsie Alumnus of the Year 2005.

The award is made to Mr Drotské for the professional way in which he led the Cheetah Rugby Team last year.  This played a determining role in the team’s 2005 Currie Cup victory.

The Cum Laude Award, made from time to time to any alumnus for outstanding service or achievement at local, national or international level in his/her specific career domain, will be awarded to Mr Harold Verster (president of the Free State Rugby Union). 

Mr Verster receives the award for the role he played in the inclusion of the Vodacom Cheetahs as Super 14 team, as well as for his leadership that contributed to the success of the Cheetah Rugby Team in 2005.

 Prof Johan Henning, Dean: Faculty of Law at the UFS, receives the Kovsie Alumni National Management Award for Exceptional Service.  This award is made from time to time to an individual who has rendered exceptional service to the UFS. 

 Prof Henning receives this award for his role in the expansion and development of the Faculty of Law as academic, centre head, department head and, especially, as dean.

 The award ceremony will take place on Friday 10 March 2006 during a Gala Award Banquet in the Reitz Hall of the UFS Centenary Complex on the Main Campus in Bloemfontein.  

 All alumni of the UFS are welcome to attend the function.  The guest artist is Matthys Roets and the entrance fee of R80 per person includes a three course meal.  

Those who are interested can contact Ms Jeannette Boshoff-Jansen at (051) 401-3594 or alumni@mail.uovs.ac.za.

Media release
Issued by: Lacea Loader
Media Representative
Tel:   (051) 401-2584
Cell:  083 645 2454
E-mail:  loaderl.stg@mail.uovs.ac.za
3 March 2006

 

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