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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

UFS Chemistry wins dti award
2010-11-02

At the awards ceremony are, from the left: Director-General of Trade and Industry Mr Tshediso Matona, Prof. Andreas Roodt and the Deputy-Minister of Trade and Industry, Ms Bongi Maria Ntuli.
Photo: S Osman

The research group of Prof. Andreas Roodt, Head of the Department of Chemistry at the University of the Free State (UFS) in Bloemfontein, won the first prize in the category Development of Small Medium and Micro-Enterprises (SMME) at the annual Department of Trade and Industry’s (dti) award ceremony.

Prof. Roodt received the prize for the high-technology project Development of novel nuclear pharmaceuticals in the Technology and Human Resources for Industry Programme (THRIP).

The Deputy-Minister of Trade and Industry Bongi Maria Ntuli, and Director-General Tshediso Matona presented the prize at the gala dinner held at Gallagher Estate, Gauteng in October 2010.

The dti’s Annual Technology Awards recognise excellence in research and aim to raise awareness on the benefits of using technology to improve the competitiveness of enterprises, within the local and global arena. Individuals and organisations are recognised for their efforts in advancing and promoting technology interests and emerging enterprises.

The technology awards cover the achievements of three of the dti technology programmes collectively, namely THRIP, managed by the National Research Foundation (NRF); the Support Programme for Industrial Innovation (SPII) managed by the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC); and the Small Enterprise Development Agency (seda) Technology Programme (stp).

Prof. Roodt, also vice-president of the European Crystallographic Association, who has just returned from a series of lectures abroad after being elected Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry in the UK, has received funding in excess of R3 million over the past two years to set up a specialised laboratory for synthesising active compounds. Key partners in this project are Dr Gerdus Kemp from PETLabs Pharmaceuticals in Pretoria; Prof. Connie Medlen (pharmacologist), recently appointed affiliate professor at UFS Chemistry; as well as Prof. Deon Visser from the Inorganic Chemistry research group at the UFS.

The research aims to produce new nuclear medicinal agents for the early diagnosis of cancer, heart and brain defects, and even HIV/ Aids.

Two doctoral students, Alice Brink and Marietjie Schutte, are currently actively involved in this project. They are the recipients of prestige scholarships introduced by the UFS Rector and Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Jonathan Jansen, under the UFS Research Initiative (the Advanced Biomolecular Systems Cluster) to complete their Ph.D. studies.

Media Release
Issued by: Lacea Loader
Director: Strategic Communication (actg)
Tel: 051 401 2584
Cell: 083 645 2454
E-mail: loaderl@ufs.ac.za  
2 November 2010

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