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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 defend tennis title in Sun City
2017-04-01

 Description: 'Kovsie Tennis Sun City Tags: Kovsie Tennis Sun City

The first and second tennis teams of the University of the
Free State 
were first and fifth respectively among the 14
teams competing 
in the Egalite Invitational challenge.
Photo: Arne Nel

Although a tournament victory was not the Kovsie tennis team’s main goal, they still managed to outplay the best in the country.

The first team of the University of the Free State (UFS), who have been the champions of the combined USSA format for the past six years, successfully defended its title to end the Egalite Invitational challenge in Sun City unbeaten.

Second team also performing well

On 26 March 2017, the Kovsie first team defeated Puk’s first team 35-20 (games) in the final. Their second team also performed well and won against Tuks’ second team 31-21 to end fifth among the 14 teams. The matches in the tournament, which took place from 24 to 26 March 2017, were played in World Team Tennis format.

In the group stages, the Kovsie first team beat Puk’s second (35-12), Puk’s fourth (35-8), Tuks’ second (35-12), Maties’ first (31-19), Puk’s sixth (35-5), and Tuks’ third (32-16) teams. The team consists of Arne Nel, Christo Koekemoer, Emke Kruger, Lienke de Kock, Ansunica Brits, and Reze Opperman.

Preparation for USSA

Apart from USSA, the Sun City tournament is the other major tournament in which the UFS annually competes. “Of course you want to win, but unlike at USSA, this was not our main focus in Sun City,” says Janine de Kock, the Kovsie team manager. “We wanted to try new combinations and provide exposure to new players.”

A total of five of the 12 players in the two teams were newcomers. They are Lienke de Kock (first team), Handré Hoffman, JC Conradie, Brieta Pienaar, and Daniel de Villiers (all second team). According to Janine de Kock, it was especially important to test new doubles combinations before USSA.

“We always knew the first team is a good team with a chance, but we are very impressed with the second team’s fifth place.”

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