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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

PSP produces first Y1-rating in UFS Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences
2015-12-14

Dr Andrew Cohen, a research fellow at the University of the Free State, recently received a distinguished National Research Foundation Y1-rating.
Photo: Sonia Small

The latest success story of the Vice-Chancellor’s Prestige Scholars Programme (PSP) is that the first National Research Foundation (NRF) Y1-rating was awarded recently to a scholar while teaching in the Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences at the University of the Free State (UFS).

Dr Andrew Cohen received this distinguished rating on 10 November 2015. It is awarded to a “young” (younger than 40) scholar five years or less post-PhD, whose curriculum vitae predicts, according to a panel of international and local reviewers, that he is poised to become a leader in his field. Dr Cohen is a research fellow at the UFS.

This rating is a reflection of Dr Cohen’s record over the past eight years, and the scholarly environment he was part of at the UFS under leadership of Prof Ian Phimister. Cohen is currently a research fellow in Prof Phimister’s International Studies Group.  He taught economic history in the Department of Economics until September 2015, when he joined the School of History at the University of Kent.

Dr Cohen’s professional trajectory is emblematic of the visionary approach of the UFS Prestige Scholars Programme (PSP): to support prestige scholars with advanced mentorship, and the creation of a college of peers in order to nurture intellectual breadth and depth to generate knowledge over disciplines.

The PSP was initiated by Prof Jonathan Jansen, Vice-Chancellor and Rector of the UFS in 2011.

“Jonathan Jansen’s prestige scholars have become sought after in the academic community at large, as this recent appointment at the University of Kent indicates,” says Professor Neil Roos, co-director of the PSP. “Yet the alumni’s commitment to the programme, the university and their peers continues.”

Cohen is the editor (with Casper Andersen) of the five volume, The Government and Administration of Africa, 1880-1939. Dr Cohen’s next project is forthcoming from I.B. Tauris, The Politics and Economics of Decolonisation: The Failed Experiment of the Central African Federation.

 

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