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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

Kovsies keep it green and clean
2012-09-10

Learners from surrounding schools do their bit for the environment taking part in the first ever Green Festival hosted on the Bloemfontein Campus.
10 September 2012

Celebrating all things green, the University of the Free State (UFS)’s first Green Festival started with a bang with the initiative being nominated for a national Eco-Logic Award.

The festival, hosted on Saturday 8 September 2012, drew the attention of a panel of highly respected environmentally aware individuals who selected the green initiative as one of five finalists in the recycling category of the Eco-logic awards. The awards are hosted in association with SABC3 and the university was selected out of nearly three hundred entries. The university will now compete with other finalists at a gala dinner at the Cradle of Humankind on 27 September 2012.

With learners from surrounding high schools who were invited to help clean parts of the city, the Bloemfontein Campus was abuzz with activity on Saturday. Staff and students from the university joined learners in taking part in activities such as the Green Film Festival where documentary movies on environmental issues were screened. Stalls and exhibitions displayed sustainable green materials and organic food. Residences took part in a body-painting competition to raise awareness about going green.

Prof. Jonathan Jansen, Rector and Vice-Chancellor, delivered a Green Festival address and praised Kovsie students for taking the lead in going green.“Our country’s future depends on us caring for the environment,” he told learners and students. “If we don’t take care of the environment, we will all be gone. It is about the next generation, about what we leave for the children.”
 

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