Latest News Archive

Please select Category, Year, and then Month to display items
Years
2017 2018 2019 2020
Previous Archive
17 April 2019 | Story Leonie Bolleurs
Science ambassadors
Friends Tekano Mbonani and Chaka Mofokeng are pursuing graduate degrees in respectively Physics at the University of the Free State (UFS) and Astronomy at the University of the Western Cape. The two got together and decided to reach out to the high school, Leseding Technical Secondary School, where they came from.

It was a full house as more than 120 learners packed the hall at the Leseding Technical Secondary School in the Free State, where two young Astronomy researchers had come home to tell their younger peers about their studies and career prospects across South Africa.

Chaka Mofokeng and Tekano Mbonani are both former learners at the high school. Currently pursuing graduate degrees – for Mbonani in Physics at the University of the Free State (UFS), and for Mofokeng in Astronomy at the University of the Western Cape – the two friends got together and decided to reach out to the high school where they came from.

The event took place in January before schoolwork, tests, and exam preparations are occupying learners’ minds, inviting them to think about the big picture – the future, and how to be part of it. This is timely, because in July last year, the MeerKAT radio telescope was inaugurated in the Karoo. The MeerKAT is the first step to the international SKA telescope project, but it is already one of the best radio telescopes in the world and has placed South Africa firmly on the world map of radio astronomy and engineering.

Building a bridge
“This project enables us to build a bridge between secondary and tertiary institutions. Currently focused on senior secondary students, we aim to promote science through outreach events and activities. Using science and technology-based activities and events, such as stargazing at an observatory or exploring the universe in a planetarium, we want to attract these future secondary graduates. We also provide mentorship, hoping to help them improve their academic performance in matric,” said Mbonani.

For a whole morning, they spoke about their journeys, about science, about the skills that scientists acquire during their studies and all the opportunities such studies open up in an era where the 4th Industrial Revolution is predicted to reduce the number of jobs in many traditional professions. They addressed their peers in both English and Sesotho.

Astronomy in South Africa contributes to critical-skills development. Investing in the MeerKAT, for example, meant that over a thousand bursaries were made available through the SKA South Africa Human Capacity Development programme. Young scientists like Mofokeng and Mbonani have the opportunity to be part of MeerKAT science projects through their studies, using machine learning and other skills that are high in demand in today’s world. This was one of the messages they brought home.

Gaining new skills

“As an Astronomy research student, I have gained skills such as data analysis, mathematical modelling, communication and writing, programming, and teamwork, among others. These are requirements for most companies and institutions. With the unfolding of the 4th Industrial Revolution, such skills sets make young and aspiring scientists the perfect candidates for making the most of future opportunities,” reflected Mofokeng.

Most of the learners said they have never attended a science-outreach event. They were inspired by the young scientists’ stories and nearly half of them said they could see themselves pursuing a career in science. The learners also expressed a strong interest in more events of this kind, as well as mentorship during Grades 11 and 12 from peers at university. They asked about the salaries earned by astronomers, how long the studies take, and where astronomers are working in South Africa.

This initiative, started by two bright young scientists, hopefully marks the beginning of many more events of this kind. Mofokeng and Mbonani are already planning what to do on their next trip home.

News Archive

The Kovsie woman hockey team back in the A Section for 2010.
2009-07-06

 
The Kovsie woman hockey team back in the A Section for 2010.
The University of the Free State (UFS) was this year the host of the University Sport South Africa (USSA) hockey tournament.

More than 660 hockey players from 17 tertiary institutions met in Bloemfontein to participate in the USSA Hockey tournament. After the National Senior Interprovincial hockey tournaments, the USSA tournament is seen as the second most important hockey tournament in South Africa. With the 34 teams that participated in the tournament on the Kovsie astro’s, it was the biggest hockey tournament in the country.

Finals Day (Day 5)

Double delight for Maties hockey

3 July 2009

JONATHAN COOK
at USSA Hockey Week in Bloemfontein

THE University Sport South Africa Hockey Week finals saw the University of Stellenbosch take the men's and women's titles, both against University of Johannesburg (UJ), at a chilly University of The Free State in Bloemfontein Friday.
There was also joy and disappointment for the promoted and relegated teams.
Hosts UFS (Kovsies) saw their men relegated back to the B Section (they had been promoted the year before at the USSA Hockey Week at North West University Pukke in Potchefstroom) and Wits return to the top level having won the B Section after their demotion last year.
Women's B Section winners in Bloemfontein Friday were Kovsies, the Free State girls now back in the A Section for 2010 after their demotion last year, while last year's promoted B Section side, University of KZN, go back to the second rung of SA university hockey after finishing last in the A Section in 2009.
Maties' men won a thrilling A Section final on a golden goal by captain Pierre de Voux after UJ had ended full-time 1-1 with the Stellenbosch men.
The women's final saw Maties run away to a 4-1 victory in the end as they finished the final in an impressive manner.
The men's and women's tournament teams, chosen under the direction of selection convenors Braam van Wyk (women) and Cheslyn Gie (men), were announced at the conclusion of the women's final at this superb hockey complex of which Kovsies have every reason to be proud.

RESULTS

Men's A Section: (1/2) University of Johannesburg 1 Maties 1 (Maties won on golden goal); (3/4) Tukkies 2 UKZN 2 (Tuks 5-4 penalty strokes); (5/6) UCT 1 NMMU 0; (7/8) Pukke 6 Kovsies 2.

Women's A Section: (1/2) Maties 4 University Johannesburg 1; (3/4) Pukke 1 Tukkies 1 (Pukke 4-2 penalty strokes); (5/6) NMMU 2 UCT 0; (7/8) Wits 2 UKZN 1.

Men's B Section: (1/2) Wits 2 Rhodes 2 (Wits won on golden goal); (3/4) Tukkies B 5 Central U of Tech 1; (5/6) Kovsies B 1 Cape Pens U of Tech 1 (Kovsies won 4-3 penalty strokes).

Other: Pukke B 2 Limpopo 0.

Women's B Section: (1/2) Kovsies 1 Rhodes 1 (Kovsies 4-3 penalty strokes); (3/4) Vaal U of Tech 3 Tukkies B 1.

Other: Central U of Tech 6 Limpopo 0, Pukke B 6 Cape Pens U of Tech 0.

2009 USSA HOCKEY TOURNAMENT TEAMS

Men: (Please note, for the men's team, SA players selected for Africa Cup in Ghana were not considered, while players were only considered who played 3 or more matches at USSA Hockey Week, as this is a Tournament team).

2009 USSA Men's Tournament Team

Goalkeepers: Jacques le Roux (Maties), Ben Mbana (Tukkies).

Defenders: Peter Bailey (NMMU), Oliver Whiteley (UJ), Kyle Rhodes (Tuks), Francois Pretorius (Tuks), David Wilson (Maties).

Links: Jonty Robinson (Tuks), Owen Mvimbi (UJ), Warren Grobler (Maties), Devon van der Merwe (UKZN), Brendon van Zyl (Tuks).

Forwards: Pierre de Voux (Maties), Geowynne Gamiet (NMMU), Brandon Panther (UJ), Duzo Khanyile (UKZN), Tebogo Lerole (UJ), Brett Pampara (Tuks). 

2009 USSA Women's Tournament Team

Goalkeepers: Hanlie Hattingh (Maties), Camille Jasson (UJ).

Defenders: Cindy Brown (Maties), Mapule Mokoena (UJ), Lisa Deetlefs (UJ), Kim Hubach (Tuks), Dirkie Chamberlain (Tuks).

Midfielders: Vida Ryan (Maties), Farah Fredericks (Maties), Lesle-Ann George (Pukke), Loreen Irvine (Pukke), Ncedisa Magwentshu (Wits), Kathleen Taylor (Maties), Lenise Marais (Maties).

Forwards: Vidette Ryan (Maties), Roxy Turner (UJ), Shelley Russell (Maties), Sulette Damons (Pukke).

Umpire grading: Erik Etsebeth (SA 2).

Day 4: Maties and UJ in University Sport men's and women's hockey finals

2 July 2009

JONATHAN COOK
at USSA Hockey Week in Bloemfontein

THE impressive University of The Free State synthetic turf hockey pitches saw some thrilling clashes Thursday, as the University Sport South Africa (USSA) Hockey Week in Bloemfontein entered its penultimate day and with it, the cross-pool playoffs.

The playoffs determine who will play in Friday's men's and women's finals, and in the men's A Section it's going to be the University of Johannesburg (UJ) against the University of Stellenbosch (Maties) at 4.30 pm, while the women's A Section finals will also see UJ tackling Maties (6 pm).

Last year's men's winners in Potchefstroom, University of Pretoria (Tukkies), went down 4-2 to Maties (third in 2008) in a penalty stroke shootout after the score read 0-0 at full-time, this after 2008 finalists UJ beat fifth-placed team last year, the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN), 4-0 in the first semi-final.

The first women's semi-final saw UJ, fourth last year, beat the third-placed team in 2008, North West University (Pukke), 3-1, while the late game Thursday for the second berth in the final was won 2-0 by defending champions Maties against last year's finalists Tukkies.  

The B Section finals - and the four teams hoping that victory Friday will earn them promotion to the A Section - are the following:
Men: Wits University versus Rhodes University (B field 4 pm).
Women: University of The Free State (Kovsies) versus Rhodes (B Field 2.30 pm).

RESULTS

Men's A Section (playing for places 1-4): University of Johannesburg (UJ) (2) 4 (Owen Mvimbi, Brandon Panther, Olly Whitely, Miguel da Graca) UKZN 0; Maties 0 Tukkies 0 (Maties won penalty stroke shootout 4-2).

(5-8): Nelson Mandela Metro University (NMMU) (3) 6 (Geowynne Gamiet 3, Giovanni Joseph 2, Satch Reddy, Peter Bailey) Kovsies (Free State) (1) 1 (Jaco Fourie); UCT (1) 2 (Mike Heyink, Sean Fielding) Pukke (North West) (1) 2 (Matt Fairweather 2) UCT won penalty stroke shootout 9-8.

Women's A Section (playing for places 1-4): UJ (2) 3 (Pietie Coetzee 2, Lisa Deetlefs) Pukke (1) 1 (Sulette Damons); Maties (0) 2 (Kathleen Taylor, Cindy Brown) Tukkies 0.

 (5-8): UCT (1) 3 (Imogen Holland 2, Jessica Kew); UKZN (0) 1 (Nosipho Dladla); NMMU (0) 1 (Jessie Heatley) Wits 0.

Men's B Section (playing for places 1-4): Wits 6 Tukkies B 1; Rhodes 5 Central U of Tech 1.

Other: Kovsies B (5) University of Namibia 4; Vaal U of Tech 2 University of Limpopo (Turfloop) 0; North Cape Urban FET 4 Cape Pens U of Tech 4 (CPUT won penalty stroke shootout 4-1).  

Women's B Section (playing for places 1-4): Rhodes 0 Vaal U of Tech 0 (Rhodes 6-5 on penalty stroke shootout); Kovsies 1 Tukkies B 1 (Kovsies won 4-2 penalty strokes).

Other: Cape Pens U of Tech 1 Fort Hare 1; Central U of Tech 2 Cape Pens U of Tech 2; Pukke B 8 University of Limpopo (Turfloop) 0.


Usual Suspects heading for USSA Hockey Week finals

30 June 2009

JONATHAN COOK
at USSA Hockey Week in Bloemfontein

THE University of Pretoria's Tukkies men and the Maties girls of Stellenbosch look to be set on defending their University Sport South Africa (USSA) hockey titles with success judging by the happenings on day two of the annual tournament at a crisp University of The Free State (Kovsies) in Bloemfontein Tuesday night.
This 34-team tournament is the biggest in the country after the Masters IPT.
In the top-tier Men's A Section, last year's winners the University of Pretoria (Tukkies) enjoyed a stunning 5-0 victory over University of Cape Town (UCT), who were the late-fightback 3-2 winners over UKZN on Monday.
After 38 minutes Tukkies were one goal to the good via the stick of Mark Holliday, but in the next 19 minutes mayhem broke out as coach Dave Viney's men from Pretoria pumped four goals past UCT. Holliday grabbed another goal from field play, with Nic Gonsalves and Michael Sykes joining the Pretoria boys' party, and Kyle Rhodes slamming in a penalty corner for good measure.
Last year's men's finalists the University of Johannesburg gained a crucial 2-0 victory against Stellenbosch in a battle of wits that saw SA U21 head coach Kurt Cerfontyne (Maties) and his assistant at the recent Junior World Cup, Garreth Ewing, in different corners this time round.
UJ went 1-0 up via a Dean Symons action goal in the 22nd minute – and the rattled Maties then had two players, David Wilson (26th) and Murray Clarke (28th) sent to the sin bin. A Miguel da Graca goal from a penalty corner made the game safe for UJ.
It looks like we are going to see another Battle of Gauteng among the men – Tukkies against UJ – in this year's men's USSA Hockey Week final.
And last season's talented SA U18 hockey striker Symons - alongside his equally talented national U18 team-mate and current UJ strike partner Marc le Sueur – could have a major say should that final come to pass at 7.30 pm on Friday.. 
In the women's A Section, the 2008 winners in Potchefstroom, Maties, were far too good for UJ, overwhelming the Johannesburg team in the second half.
Although they could only get one more goal after the interval through Spar SA striker Vida Ryan to add to Cindy Brown's first-half brace, Maties could have scored a good few more. Louise Coertzen scored UJ's goal that made the first-half-score read 2-1 to Maties.
However, UJ still have a chance to get to Friday's 6 pm final should they (likely) finish second to Maties in Pool A and qualify to tackle the Pool B winners in the semi-finals at 4.30 pm Thursday.
Last year's women's finalists, Tukkies, met North West and the score was 1-1 at the end after the Pretoria team had led 1-0 at half-time through Dirkie Chamberlain. Chantelle Bekker replied for Pukke.
In the B Section, host university Free State's ambitious women (Kovsies) beat University of Fort Hare 7-0.

RESULTS

Men – A Section: Tukkies (1) 5 (Mark Holliday 2, Nic Gonsalves, Kyle Rhodes, Michael Sykes) UCT 0; U of Johannesburg (1) 2 (Dean Symons, Miguel da Graca) Maties 0; UKZN (2) 3 (Duzo Khanyile, Karl Oftebro, Sihle Ntuli) Kovsies (1) 1 (Paul Jordaan); Nelson Mandela Metro U (0) 2 (Nathan Kops, Wesley Wittstock) North West (1) 1 (Matt Fairweather).

Women – A Section: Wits (2) 3 (Kirsten du Toit, Robyn Taylor, Robyn Johnson) UKZN (0) 1 (Nosipho Dladla); Maties (2) 3 (Cindy Brown 2, Vida Ryan) UJ (1) 1 (Louise Coertzen); North West (0) 1 (Chantelle Bekker) Tukkies (1) 1 (Dirkie Chamberlain); UCT (1) 2 (Deidre Potgieter, Keren Robertson) Nelson Mandela Metro U (0) 1 (Jocelyn Coombs).

Men – B Section: North Cape Urban FET 4 Vaal U of Tech 1; Tukkies B 5 Limpopo Turfloop 1; Vaal U of Tech 1 Pukke B 0; Wits 5 Kovsies B 2; Central U of Tech 2 N Cape Urban FET 1; U of Namibia 3 Cape Pens U of Tech 0; Rhodes 4 Tukkies B 2; Central U of Tech 2 Kovsies B 1; Wits 10 Pukke B 1.

Women – B Section: Rhodes 5 Pukke B 0; Tukkies B 5 Cape Pens U of Tech 0; Kovsies 7 Fort Hare 0; Pukke B 4 Central U of Tech 0; Vaal U of Tech 8 Limpopo Turfloop 0; Kovsies 7 Central U of Tech 0.


Cold weather doesn't deter hot hockey at Kovsies
Varsities hockey week on fire

JONATHAN COOK
at USSA Hockey Week in Bloemfontein

Despite the cold weather, there was much to warm the cockles of one's heart on day one of the University Sport South Africa (USSA) Hockey Week at University of the Free State (Kovsies) in Bloemfontein Monday.
In the Men's A Section (the first division), the fancied University of Pretoria (Tuks) beat hosts Free State Varsity (Kovsies) 4-0 after leading by two goals at half-time. All the Tuks goals were field goals with the scorers being Jonty Robinson, captain Brendan van Zyl, Simon O'Callaghan and Malcolm Ratz.
The University of Johannesburg clash with Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (NMMU of Port Elizabeth) went down to the wire, UJ eventually prevailing 2-1.
After a goalless first half, UJ's Tebogo Lerole opened proceedings from a penalty corner and Joezay Kops equalised for NMMU with 12 minutes to go. The winner came after the final hooter had sounded, umpire Erik Etsebeth correctly awarding a penalty corner to UJ, which meant the set-piece had to be concluded, and Brandon Panther netted a great deflection goal for the winner.
The Maties men versus Pukke match saw the Potch boys start shakily. The Stellenbosch side under SA U21 head coach Kurt Cerfontyne were 3-0 up before the Pukke got back into the game. Although it was fairly even from this point, the Pukke caught fire too late in order to catch the Maties cold.
On a hot-blooded day for the umpires, who got heat from the players on the field and from personnel on the benches, both teams in this match were complimented for their well-disciplined benches.
Tuks' women and NMMU played to a goalless draw in the Women's A Section before University of Stellenbosch (Maties) outplayed University of KZN 8-0 after leading 3-0 at the break. Spar SA striker Farah Fredericks bagged a hat-trick with national team-mates Cindy Brown, Vida Ryan and Kathleen Taylor also getting in on the act.
The Pukke of North West University beat University of Cape Town (UCT) 3-0 with Chantelle Bekker, Lesle-Ann George and Princess Khuzwayo getting among the goals.
The University of The Free State is to be congratulated on a splendid venue, with synthetic turf hockey pitches side-by-side and including proper technical areas on both fields plus a festive clubhouse facility.

RESULTS

Men – A Section: Tukkies (2) 4 (Jonty Robinson, Brendan van Zyl, Simon O'Callaghan, Malcolm Ratz) Kovsies 0; UJ (0) 2 (Tebogo Lerole, Brandon Panther) NMMU (0) 1 (Joezay Kops); UCT (2) 3 (Ant Vervoort 2, Simon van Helsdingen) UKZN (2) 2 (Dalan Phillips, Duzo Khanyile); Maties (2) 3 (Pierre de Voux, Shaun McIntyre, Rob Grant) Pukke (0) 1 (Matt Fairweather).

Women – A Section: Tuks 0 NMMU 0; Maties (3) 8 (Farah Fredericks 3, Candice Manuel 2, Vida Ryan, Cindy Brown, Kath Taylor) UKZN 0; Pukke (1) 3 (Chantelle Bekker, Lesle-Ann George, Princess Khuzwayo) UCT 0; UJ (3) 7 (Bernadette Coston, Roxanne Turner 2, Louise Coertzen, Sarah Harley 2, Nicole de Vries) Wits 0.

Men – B Section: UFS Reds B 2 N Cape Urban FET 2; Rhodes 7 Limpopo Turfloop 1; Wits 3 Central U of Tech 2; Tukkies B 4 Cape Pens U of Tech 0; Pukke B 0 NCU FET 2; UFS Reds 1 Vaal U of Tech 0; Namibia Uni 10 Limpopo 2; Rhodes 3 Cape Pens U of Tech 1; Pukke B 0 Central U of Tech 5. 

Women – B Section: Rhodes 4 Central U of Tech 0; Pukke B 3 Fort Hare 0; Tukkies B 12 Limpopo 0; Vaal U of Tech 6 Cape Pens U of Tech 0; UFS Reds 3 Rhodes 2. 

We use cookies to make interactions with our websites and services easy and meaningful. To better understand how they are used, read more about the UFS cookie policy. By continuing to use this site you are giving us your consent to do this.

Accept