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26 February 2019 | Story Eugene Seegers | Photo Eugene Seegers
Prof Francis Petersen, Rector and Vice-Chancellor, Prof Daniella Coetzee, South Campus Principal, Tshegofatso Setilo, Director Access, Prof Prakash Naidoo, Vice-Rector Operations
Prof Francis Petersen, Prof Daniella Coetzee (Principal: South Campus), Tshegofatso Setilo (Head: Access Programmes), and Prof Prakash Naidoo (Vice-Rector: Operations) on the South Campus for the welcoming of first-years.


“Welcome to the South Campus of the University of the Free State!” Addressing a packed Madiba Arena, Prof Francis Petersen, Rector and Vice-Chancellor of the UFS, said he was happy to see not only first-year students, but also parents and guardians, student leadership, and support staff from both the Bloemfontein and South Campuses.

 “I would like to congratulate each of our first-year students for making the decision to come to Kovsies to further your studies here. But I would also like to thank you for making this choice,” he continued.

Prof Petersen further emphasised that the students’ experience and success as individuals are important to the UFS as an institution; therefore, academic and support staff are on hand to guide them through their journey to becoming well-rounded individuals. “We will surely take care of you,” said Prof Petersen. He also reassured parents and guardians that their loved ones would be well looked after.

The Rector also focused attention on the role of student-leadership structures, such as the newly-formed Institutional Student Representative Council (ISRC) and South Campus SRC, members of which were present in the audience. He thanked them for playing a key role in the student constituency, highlighting their support and guidance to help first-years cultivate a sense of belonging at the UFS.

Turning back to first-year students, Prof Petersen stated that they have the unique opportunity to study on a campus specifically focused on developing their full potential, a campus where they can realise their dreams. “Your arrival on the campus marks a new chapter in your life. This chapter is slightly different, as you are the author thereof. The previous chapters in your life were largely written by others—your parents, guardians, families, teachers, and others. You will now be the main author in the next chapter of your unique story.”

“At Kovsies, we believe in developing students in their totality as human beings, not just the academic side. May your time with us equip you to make a success of your life after university!”

Prof Petersen’s Message to First-year Students
  1. Take responsibility for your academic programme.
    • Keep your focus. Study and study hard. You will reap the rewards and see the advantages of making success in your studies a top priority.
    • Make sure that you have enough time for your studies; balance your social life and your time set aside to study.
  2. Realise and remember that you are not alone.
    • If you find things difficult, seek help.
    • Our Department of Student Counselling and Development has trained staff and tailor-made programmes that can assist you.
    • Look after your mental health—and look after each other’s mental health.
  3. Make the most of your time at Kovsies.
    • Join one or more of the student organisations; why not try something new?
  4. Embrace difference and diversity.
    • Get to know students who are different from you.
    • You will lose valuable opportunities to grow if you only associate with your own all the time. It is important to get to know students who are different from you. It could be someone from a different part of the country, or from another country, a different ethnicity, a different religion, someone who has different views from yours, or who has different interests and perspectives.

News Archive

UFS changes format of graduation ceremony
2011-04-17

 

The highest number of qualifications in the history of the University of the Free State (UFS) will be awarded at the autumn diploma and graduation ceremony from 9-11 May 2011, which will be held in the Callie Human Centre on our Main Campus in Bloemfontein.

From this year, the format of the ceremony will change to make it more visible to students and the public. For the first time, all the doctoral and master’s degrees from each respective faculty will be conferred during one ceremony on 11 May 2011, instead of each faculty handling these qualifications individually. Another change in the format is that the procession will gather on the Red Square in front of the Main Building and move to the Callie Human Centre from there. Both academic staff and graduands will partake in the procession.

A total of 3 674 qualifications will be conferred during this year’s graduation ceremony, including 629 diplomas, 2 613 Bachelors and honours degrees, 372 master’s degrees and 58 doctorates.

An honorary doctorate in Drama and Theatre Arts will also be awarded to theatre stalwart Mr Pieter Fourie. He is one of the most acclaimed Afrikaans playwrights in South Africa and probably the only person to have left his mark as an actor, director, artistic director and writer.

Mr Fourie was awarded the Gerhard Beukes prize for drama , was honoured for his contribution to the arts by the South African Academy for Science and Arts and was appointed as trustee of the Arts and Culture Trust of the State President in 1997. He has also served as a committee member of the South African Academy for Science and Arts.

Mr. Fourie has also been the proud recipient of the Hertzog prize for drama, two FNB-Vita awards and a Fleur Du Cap award.
 

The full programme for the respective ceremonies is as follows:

  • Monday, 9 May 2011:

At 08:30, certificates and diplomas, excluding PGED and PGES, will be awarded to graduates from the Faculty of Education and at 12:00 PGED, PGED and B and honours degrees will be awarded to students from the same faculty. At 15:30 on the same day, certificates and B and honours degrees will be awarded to students in the Faculty of the Humanities.

At 19:00, the Faculties of Education, the Humanities and Economic and Management Sciences will have their prize-giving ceremonies for outstanding achievers.

  • Tuesday, 10 May 2011:

At 08:30, students in the Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences will graduate and at and 12:00 the Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Science will join them. This includes students in BML, B.Admin., B.Pub. and related honours degrees. At 15:30, 503 students from the Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences will receive their certificates, diplomas and B and honours degrees.

At 19:00, the Faculties of Health Sciences, Natural and Agriculture Sciences, Law and Theology will have their prize-giving ceremonies.

  • Wednesday, 11 May 2011:

The Faculty of Health Sciences, the Faculty of Law and the Faculty of Theology will be awarding their certificates, diplomas and B and honours degrees at 08:30. At 12:00, all faculties will award a total of 372 master’s degrees and at 15:30 a total of 58 doctorates will be conferred.

The Chancellor’s Dinner will take place in the Centenary Complex on the Main Campus of the UFS at 19:00.

The graduation ceremony of our Qwaqwa Campus will take place in the Rolihlahla Mandela Hall on the Qwaqwa Campus on 7 May 2011 at 10:00. All the faculties at this campus will confer their degrees, certificates and diplomas at this ceremony.
 


Media Release
21 April 2011
Issued by: Lacea Loader
Director: Strategic Communication
Tel: 051 401 2584
Cell: 083 645 2454
E-mail: news@ufs.ac.za

 

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