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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

Mid-year prize-giving ceremony for UPP and Extended Programme students
2012-09-20

Prof. Neil Heideman, Dean of the Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences, with top achiever Buyisani Masabalala.
20 September 2012

With a subject percentage of 94% in Chemistry and 89% in Mathematics, Buyisani Masabalala is at the top of his class. The student, who is part of the University Preparation Programme (UPP) offered on the South Campus of the University of the Free State, was named top student in the Natural Sciences for students in the programme.

Buyisani and 28 other students on the UPP and Extended Degree programme, received certificates at a prize-giving ceremony held on the South Campus. They were top performers during their first six months in all subjects on the UPP and Extended Degree programme. The UPP is a one-year bridging programme for students who do not meet the initial admission requirements for mainstream studies at a university. The extended degree programme caters for students who do meet mainstream university admission requirements but have a lower admission score.

With their excellent results, Buyisani and the other top achievers are now one step away from entrance into mainstream studies. They are now awaiting their final results that will be out at the end of the year. As an incentive to study even harder, the UPP top achievers in the Faculties of Humanities, Economic and Management Sciences, Natural and Agricultural Sciences and Agricultural Sciences and Education will each receive a bursary at the end of the year. The same applies for top achievers in the B Com and BSc Extended Programme and the Vocational Directed Preparation Programme top achievers.

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