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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

UFS hosts tenth SASRIM conference filled with highlights
2016-08-23

Description: SASRIM conference book Tags: SASRIM conference book

A new OSM book entitled Musics of the Free State:
Reflections on a Musical Past, Present and Future
will be launched on 25 August 2016 as part of the
South African Society for Research in Music’s
conference, hosted by the UFS.

Photo: Supplied

Bridging the gap between music thinking and music making. This is one of many aims of the South African Society for Research in Music (SASRIM), whose 2016 annual conference will be hosted by the Odeion School of Music (OSM) at the University of the Free State (UFS). It marks the tenth anniversary of SASRIM and the congress, from 25 to 27 August 2016, features many highlights. This includes the Arnold van Wyk Centenary Gala Concert and the launch of the OSM book Musics of the Free State: Reflections on a Musical Past, Present and Future. Keynote speakers will be Stephanus Muller from Stellenbosch University and Guthrie Ramsey from the University of Pennsylvania.

Society encourages multiple facets of music research
Research forms a crucial part of music and therefore SASRIM looks at perspectives on thinking and performing the boundary between music thinking and music making. The society also encourages the submission of a wide variety of proposals, including those exploring alternative formats, multiple facets of music research and practice on the African continent, and disciplinary intersections. Contributions that reflect on the first decade of the society’s existence or any aspect related to Van Wyk are especially welcome.

New OSM book receives sterling international review

Musics of the Free State is a nuanced and
richly endowed study of musical practices in
South Africa, which deserves the international
dissemination it will now receive”.

“It will deeply repay close reading far beyond Bloemfontein.” That was some of the praise that Musics of the Free State received from Prof Harry White from the University of Dublin in the International Review of the Aesthetics and Sociology of Music 47 (1). According to him the book, edited by Prof Martina Viljoen from the OSM, “is a nuanced and richly endowed study of musical practices in South Africa, which deserves the international dissemination it will now receive”.
The book will be launched on 25 August 2016 in the Odeion foyer after the Arnold van Wyk Centenary Gala Concert.

Gala concert commemorate celebrated SA composer
The gala concert on 25 August 2016 at 18:00 will be recited by OSM staff members and the OSM Camerata in the Odeion Auditorium. The programme for a special concert, presented in collaboration with Fine Music, has been curated to celebrate the centenary of the birth of South African composer, Arnold van Wyk. Tickets are available at Computicket or at the door.

The concert, which will also serve as the annual OSM Dean’s concert, will be broadcasted live by Fine Music Radio.

See the following links:

More information about SASRIM 2016.
To listen to the broadcast of the Arnold van Wyk Centenary Gala Concert (then click the button to listen live).
A complete review by Prof White on Musics of the Free State will be available soon.
Copies of Musics of the Free State can be purchased from the OSM at OSM@ufs.ac.za.

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