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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

Knific Duo from US lecture and perform at OSM
2017-05-12

Description: ' 000 Knific Duo Tags: Knific Duo

Profs Tom Knific and Renata Artman Knific from the Western
Michigan University School of Music are visiting the Odeion
School of Music at the University of the Free State.
Photo: Supplied

The renowned Knific Duo will not only perform at the University of the Free State (UFS) soon, but will also share their expertise at the Odeion School of Music (OSM). The duo, consisting of Profs Tom Knific and Renata Artman Knific, from the prestigious Western Michigan University School of Music, are presenting a masterclass series hosted by the OSM Concert Agency. The series takes place from 10-14 May 2017 and the concert on 16 May 2017.

Concert features local pianists

The first half of the concert on 16 May 2017 will present a programme leaning towards the classical genre. Apart from three works composed by Prof Knific, it will also include two movements from the Violin Sonata by the Hungarian composer Miklós Rózsa. 
In the second half Prof Knific will collaborate with two local pianists, the legendary jazz pianist, composer and music educator, Noel Stockton, and the talented Andile Qongqo, and for a carefully curated jazz programme mainly from the oeuvre of Prof Knific. Random Dreams, a work composed by Stockton will also be included.

Well-known around the world

Prof Knific (double bass) is a Professor at the Department of Jazz at the Western Michigan University School of Music. He has been principal bassist of orchestras from the US to Europe and performed as a soloist and in chamber music festivals around the world. He also is a former president of the International Society of Bassists.

Prof Artman Knific (violin) is a professor of violin at the same institution. Her international career began in London at 21 when she joined the English Chamber Orchestra. Tours of Europe, North and South America and Asia followed where she collaborated with artists such as Herman Bauman and Isaac Stern. She has worked with conductors such as Daniel Barenboim and Christoph Eschenbach, and recorded records for EMI, Decca, and CBS labels.
 
Date: 16 May 2017
Time: 19:30
Place: Odeion (Bloemfontein Campus)

Musicians interested in masterclasses can contact Ninette Pretorius at  pretoriusn@ufs.ac.za

 

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