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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

UFS casts its net wider for collaborative partner engagement
2015-10-19

Ms Felicia Mabuza-Suttle and Mr Ndaba Ntsele

The office of Institutional Advancement at the University of the Free State hosted an event on 9 October 2015 in Johannesburg, to engage prospective partners and donors, to showcase its various projects and programmes, and to recognise existing donors for their contributions.

The event, titled “Revenge of the Caterpillar”, prompted a discussion on the story of change at the University of the Free State, focusing on transformation as well as new ways of advancing a University amidst recent events.

The programme director, Mr Ndaba Ntsele, CEO and Director of Pamodzi Holdings and member of the UFS Council, introduced the Vice-Chancellor and Rector, Prof Jonathan Jansen, to the audience. Mr Ntsele expressed his deep respect and confidence in the Vice-Chancellor and his leadership of the university.

Professor Jansen launched his new book, Leading for Change: Race, intimacy, and leadership on divided university campuses, which offers theoretical grounds for thinking about, and transforming, leadership and higher education worldwide. In the context of his book, Prof Jansen discussed inter-racial relationships among students at the UFS and their experiences, which mirror race relations in the country among communities that have come out of a long history of oppression, such as slavery and apartheid.

Prof Jansen also spoke of the challenges that have surfaced nationally on racial symbols on university campuses. “At the UFS, we have dealt with issues concerning racial symbolism.  It is important to lead in times of peace, in order to be able to lead in times of trouble,” he said.

A robust discussion followed, on the way forward for transformation at institutions of higher education, and how this affects communities and the nation at large.   The event was attended by representatives of donor and affiliate organisations of the UFS, such the Nedbank Group, The South African Holocaust and Genocide Foundation, and celebrity guests such as Gareth Cliff, Felicia Mabuza-Suttle and Leanne Manas.



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