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25 April 2019 | Story Mamosa Makaya

Since 2016, the University of the Free State Center for Universal Access and Disability Support (CUADS) has received a grant from First National Bank worth R2 498 000, which supports tertiary bursaries for students with disabilities. Bursary holders are funded through CUADS, as the administrator of the bursaries.
  
These are students enrolled for various academic programmes who require academic assistance and/or assistive devices such as electronic handheld magnifiers, laptops, and hearing aids. The FNB grant also covers tuition, accommodation, study material and books, and meals.  The success of the grant is already evident, with one of the recipients having graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in December 2018. A second student was capped at the April 2019 graduations with a BSc Honours in Quantity Surveying.
 
Supporting the principles of the ITP

The UFS received the grant from FNB in instalments, starting in the 2016 academic year to date, supporting the needs of 40 disabled students. This grant and the work of CUADS speaks to and supports the principles of the Integrated Transformation Plan (ITP), namely inclusivity, transformation, and diversity. The vision of the Universal Access work stream is to enable the UFS to create an environment where students with disabilities can experience all aspects of student life equal to their non-disabled peers. The ITP provides for the recognition of the rights of people with disabilities as an important lesson in social justice and an opportunity to reinforce university values.

The successful administration of the grant to benefit past and present students is a ‘feather in the cap’ of CUADS, and is a shining example of the impact of public private investment and the endless possibilities that open up when there is a commitment to developing future leaders in academic spaces, allowing them to thrive by creating a learning environment that is welcoming and empowering. 



News Archive

Asive humbled by new responsibility
2017-09-27

Description: TEDxUFS   Tags: TEDxUFS

Asive Dlanjwa, President of the Student Representative
Council (SRC) on the Bloemfontein Campus, and Pura
Mgolombane, Dean of Student Affairs, during the
announcement of the 2017/2018 SRC.
Photo: Johan Roux

Nothing humbles him more than the fact that thousands of students had chosen to put their weight, hopes, and dreams behind him. The emotions Asive Dlanjwa felt when he was announced as the new President of the Student Representative Council (SRC) on the Bloemfontein Campus reveals something about his character.

He clearly understands the weight of the responsibility on his shoulders. Asive, who loves the church and cycling, says he felt a variety of emotions when he was announced as president on 31 August 2017 at the Thakaneng Bridge.

“It was an exciting feeling, but more than anything, it was such a humbling feeling; humbled not only by the excitement of the students when I was announced, but also by the fact that thousands of students had chosen to put their weight, hopes, and dreams behind me!”

Two main objectives

Asive and his SRC have two main objectives – to improve access to the university and advance the integration of our off-campus students into the greater campus community. The Bachelor of Commerce student from Umtata says there are several issues and initiatives his SRC will be tackling – all of them flowing from these objectives.

Including off-campus students

Asive says the SRC will seek to improve access to the university and its various offerings, and to also provide the necessary support to ensure their success. “Also within this objective would be to decisively deal with all forms of exclusion, from academic to financial to social and cultural exclusions perpetuated by systems and policies.”

With regards to off-campus students, he says university life previously revolved around residence life. He means the remains of that are still evident, to the detriment of the greater student community who are off-campus students.

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