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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

Alumnus presents 27th Sophia Gray Memorial Lecture
2015-09-07

 
Anton Roodt
Photo: iFlair

In a packed Civic Theatre in Bloemfontein, Anton Roodt, an alumnus from the UFS Department of Architecture, presented the 27th Sophia Gray Memorial Lecture.
 
Roodt received numerous awards for his work during his career. He also completed three masters degrees at the UFS, all of them cum laude.

The theme for his lecture was: Big dreams in a small city. Places of memory¦Spaces of imagination.
 
In his presentation, he focused mainly on President Brand Street, one of the most beautiful streets in South Africa – a gem waiting to be rediscovered, as well as Waaihoek, where many projects are planned for the future.
 
During his career, Roodt has been involved in various projects in these areas, including the Fourth Raadsaal, for which he received a FSIA Award in 2011. The Mapikela House in Batho is another project he was involved in.
 
He believes universities are small cities with a good deal of ambition. A number of infrastructure projects on the campuses of the UFS were designed by Roodt Architects. On the Bloemfontein Campus, this includes the Student Centre on the Thakaneng Bridge, the Main Gate, the Financial Planning Law Building, and the Computer Centre, as well work done on the Albert Wessels Auditorium. They also designed the dining room and the Main Entrance on the Qwaqwa Campus.
 
Roodt was introduced to the audience by the familiar singer and his university friend, Coenie de Villiers, with the question: “Why architecture?” He replied: “It is one of the best professions to take you to places most people will never be able to visit – sometimes literally to the feet of kings.”
 
Roodt believes that architects are sellers of dreams. “Dreams are the purest form of imagination. Architects dream of places as if people matter,” he said.
 
The Women in Architecture initiative was also launched by the South African Council for the Architectural Profession at the event. Of more than 8 800 professional architects, only 21% are women.

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