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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

SAB World of Learning Brewery bid awarded to Kovsie Brewing
2017-11-28

Description: Kovsie Brewing 2 2017 Tags: Kovsie Brewing 2 2017 

Visitors from SA Breweries (AB InBev), Khosi Mogotsi,
Patience Selesho and Zinhle Ngcobo with
Dr Jan-G Vermeulen and Dr Errol Cason from
Kovsie Brewery.
Photos: Moeketsi Mogotsi

With the recent procurement of SAB by Anheuser-Busch InBev SA/NV (AB InBev), a Belgian transnational beverage and brewing company, the 500L educational brewery located at the SAB Cyril Ramaphosa World of Learning, became available for donation. After an initial shortlisting of three universities, the SAB World of Learning Brewery was awarded to the University of the Free State (UFS) to be managed by Kovsie Brewing.

Prof Corli Witthuhn, Vice-Rector: Research at the UFS, approved the application for a micro-manufacturing liquor licence right in the middle of campus, which effectively put the UFS bid in a class of its own. It is part of her vision that entrepreneurial activities must be visible on campus”

Sixteen universities were approached to obtain the brewery for their respective campuses.

Kovsie Brewing is an initiative started by postgraduate students at the UFS Department of Microbial, Biochemical and Food Biotechnology in 2012. The main objective of this initiative was to expose BSc students to brewing as a practical application of the scientific fields presented at the department.
 

Description: Kovsie Brewing 1 2017 Tags: Kovsie Brewing 1 2017 

Label mock-ups made by
Dr Jan-G Vermeulen from
Kovsie Brewery entered into
the yearly  SAB Intervarsity
Brewing Competition. Kovsie
Brewing has won the best label
competition in 2013, 2014 and 2015
and was placed in the top three in
2016 and 2017.


First brewing and fermentation school
Dr Errol Cason, project leader at Kovsie Brewery, said: “Over the past five years the small-scale experimental brewery has steadily grown to the point where we obtained institutional support to establish the first Brewing and Fermentation School at the university.

Dr Cason explains that the primary role of Kovsie Brewing is to establish an accredited fermentation-based curriculum at the UFS to educate undergraduate and postgraduate students in the scientific process involved in the production of beer. “In addition, the donation enables Kovsie Brewing to provide practical job-related training and skills development on industrial grade equipment,” he said.

Emphasis on entrepreneurship
The secondary role is for Kovsie Brewing to function as a multi-disciplinary platform to stimulate the interaction between students from various fields of study. Currently Kovsie Brewing has well-established cooperative projects with both Marketing and Entrepreneurship programmes.

“In the future, Kovsie Brewing will expand on these multi-disciplinary interactions by incorporating other departments of the UFS with the focus on product development, logistics, as well as the legal aspects concerned with brewing,” Dr Jan-G Vermeulen from the Kovsie Brewery team said.

Corporate social investment representatives from AB InBev recently visited the university. Among others they met Drs Vermeulen and Cason. During their visit they also looked at other university projects, including the Department of Paediatric and Child Health and the Universitas Hospital, the Engineering Sciences Department and the Naval Hill Planetarium.

Khosi Mogotsi from AB InBev said: “It was wonderful to experience the passion with which UFS staff do their work.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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