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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

SADoCoL receives partial reinstatement of blood sample testing by the World Anti-Doping Agency
2016-08-22

Last week, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) announced the lifting of the suspension of blood sample analysis by the South African Doping Control Laboratory (SADoCoL) at the University of the Free State (UFS). Although the suspension of urine sample analysis is still under review, the UFS is appreciative of the new outcome. The initial temporary suspension of SADoCoL, announced on 3 May 2016, included the suspension of all doping-control procedures which applied to both urine and blood samples.

The main reason for the suspension involved analytical techniques relevant to urine analysis; however, the testing of blood samples was also included in the suspension. At the time of the suspension, no adverse findings were reported for the laboratory in relation to blood-sample testing for Athlete Blood Passport (ABP) assessment. 

According to the agreement with WADA, the suspension period would be utilised to implement and test new systems in order to achieve the standard presently required by WADA, as well as to perform development and improvements. SADoCoL is a specialised service laboratory of the UFS and has been in existence for more than thirty years.

Upon SADoCoL’s request to lift the suspension of only the ABP analysis, WADA agreed to allow the laboratory to apply for reaccreditation.  SADoCoL immediately applied for reaccreditation of ABP analysis on blood, so that the laboratory would be allowed to at least offer this service to the Anti-Doping community in Africa.

For this purpose, inspections were performed by the South African National Accreditation System (SANAS) and by WADA, during which all aspects of blood analysis by the laboratory were thoroughly assessed and tested.  The successful outcome of these inspections resulted in the reaccreditation of SADoCoL by WADA in order to perform ABP analysis as required by the WADA International Standard for Laboratories, with effect from 4 August 2016. 

This outcome allows the laboratory to once again perform this very essential analytical procedure.  The South African Institute for Drug-Free Sport (SAIDS) and other regular users can now continue to send blood samples to SADoCoL for ABP analysis, instead of making use of alternative laboratories.

 

Released by: Lacea Loader (Director: Communication and Brand Management)
Tel: +27 51 401 3422/2707 or +27 83 645 2454
Email: news@ufs.ac.za  | loaderl@ufs.ac.za
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