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18 April 2019 | Story Rulanzen Martin

The Institute for Reconciliation and Social Justice IRSJ) has initiated a Social Justice Week at the University of the Free State (UFS), which started on Friday 12 April  until Wednesday 17 April 2019. 

Ten key events took place during the week. It ranged from dialogues, workshops, talk shows, debates, and interactive displays and events on issues of multilingualism and diversity, social innovation, engaged scholarship, the Fourth Industrial Revolution, gender sensitisation, sexual consent, sexual preparedness, universal access, disability, anti-discrimination, and security.

There was also a round-table discussion on 17 April 2019 with various UFS stakeholders on off-campus student security as well as an inter-institutional discussion on the same topic. The UFS Debating Society will take on the topic of the UFS Language Policy, while Olga Barends from the Free State Centre for Human Rights will host a dialogue on sexual consent.

The IRSJ has also designed and implemented SOJO-VATION: Social Innovation/ Social Change, which strives to create a foundational platform where ideas of social justice, innovation, and engaged scholarship at the UFS and in society can be hosted. SOJO-VATION partners with the Office for Student Leadership, Development, and Community Engagement.

The collaborating partners for the Social Justice Week includes various UFS stakeholders such as the Sasol library, the Gender and Sexual Equity Office, UFS Protection Services, the Free State Centre for Human Rights, the Student Representative Council (SRC), the Office for Student Leadership Development, Kovsie Innovation, GALA, the FFree State Centre for Human Rights, SRC Associations, the Office for Student Governance, Kovsie Innovate, Start-Up-Grind, EVC, EBL, Community Engagement, the Institutional Transformation Plan (ITP) Dialogues Office, Residence Dialogues, UFS Debating Society, Debate Afrika!, the Center for Universal Access and Disability Support (CUADS), and the Gateway Office. 

News Archive

Prof Frederick Fourie to step down: Statement by the Acting Rector, Prof Teuns Verschoor
2008-09-08

Following the announcement by Prof Frederick Fourie that he is stepping down as vice-chancellor of the University of the Free State (UFS), one cannot help but reflect on the momentous contribution he has made to the development of the UFS.

At the time of his appointment as vice-rector in 1999, the UFS was in a financial crisis. There had been three rounds of staff reductions, there were no funds for equipment or the maintenance of buildings and there was a general mood of despair amongst staff.

With his unique style and talents, and against all odds, as acting rector and as rector from 2003, Prof Fourie succeeded in bringing about a financial turnaround that once again brought hope to the staff of the UFS.

Research improved dramatically, inter alia due to the refurbishment of laboratories and the acquisition of world-class research equipment. General campus infrastructure was significantly upgraded and aesthetically improved, making the physical appearance and quality of the campus and example to other universities.

The university structure was critically analysed in all its dimensions and quality assurance projects were launched to improve the overall package of higher education offerings at the UFS.

Another initiative led to the compilation of a transformation plan that was adopted by the management and the UFS Council and that lays the basis for the years ahead.

Through these and countless other initiatives, Prof Fourie has contributed significantly to the establishment of the UFS as a nationally and internationally recognised higher education institution.

Prof Fourie has laid the foundations for the next period of academic growth and development, the value of which will only be appreciated in its full significance in historical perspective.

The UFS is saddened that the high intensity of change management processes has taken its toll on the rector, but is deeply thankful for the legacy that he leaves.

We wish Prof Fourie many productive years ahead and have faith that his remarkable intellect and capabilities will enable him to make many more contributions to the betterment of South African society.

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  
8 September 2008
 

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