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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

2014 Winter Graduation
2014-06-27

 
It is time for the 2014 Winter Graduation on our Bloemfontein Campus. From 2 – 4 July 2014 Masters and Doctoral degrees will be bestowed on graduates from across all seven faculties as well as the School of Open Learning. These include the conferral of Medicine degrees on the South African Cuban trainees.

Wednesday 2 July 2014 at 14:30: School of Open Learning
The School of Open Learning will confer a total of 609 degrees this year – almost double compared to the 320 of last year.

Thursday 3 July 2014 at 09:30: Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences
Prof Magdalena Blum will receive an Honorary Doctorat, DPhil honoris causa, at this event. Prof Blum is an Extension Systems Officer in Rome. She works for a specialised agency of the United Nations called the Food and Agriculture Organization. This organisation’s mandate is:
• to improve nutrition,
• increase agricultural productivity,
• raise the standard of living in rural populations and
• contribute to global economic growth.

Her position serves to modernise and strengthen rural advisory services, their systems and networks worldwide. She has filled this position for almost nine years.

Prof Blum is driven by a passion for development, humanitarian work and female upliftment, but most of all, to enable people to help themselves.

Blum’s life has taken her from a small German village to Africa, Asia and Europe – and she has made an impact wherever she went.

Thursday 3 July 2014 at 14:30: Faculties of Economic and Management Sciences, Humanities, Education, Health Sciences, Law and Theology
At this ceremony, Faculty of the Humanities will award an Honorary Doctorate, DPhil honoris causa, on Prof Laura Mulvey. She is a feminist film theorist and worked at the British Film Institute for many years. She is currently a professor at Film and Media Studies at Birkbeck, University of London.

Prof Mulvey was prominent as an avant-garde filmmaker in the 1970s and ‘80s. In collaboration with her husband, Peter Wollen, she co-wrote and co-directed:
• Penthesilea: Queen of the Amazons (1974),
• Riddles of the Sphinx (1977, perhaps their most influential film),
• AMY! (1980),
• Crystal Gazing (1982),
• Frida Kahlo and Tina Modotti (1982), and
• The Bad Sister.

In 1991, she returned to filmmaking with Disgraced Monuments, which she co-directed with Mark Lewis.

Friday 4 July 2014 at 10:30: Special Graduation Ceremony
Conferral of Medicine Degrees on the South African Cuban trainees at the UFS

Live streaming will be available on: http://www.ufs.ac.za/ufslivestreaming/

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