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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

Interpreting implemented at UFS residences
2007-10-12

The University of the Free State (UFS) has begun to implement interpreting services at student residence meetings on the Main Campus in Bloemfontein, as part of the management of diversity and the racial integration of its residences.

As a pilot project, the interpreting services are being offered since the third term at Emily Hobhouse and Roosmaryn ladies residences, where a significant racial diversity already is present. From next year this service will be extended to all the student residences on the Main Campus.

The interpreting project is being managed by the Department of Afro-asiatic Studies, Sign Language and Language Practice at the UFS.

“Students in training at the Department of Afro-asiatic Studies, Sign Language and Language Practice and senior interpreters from the UFS are currently interpreting during residence meetings,” said Prof. Jackie Naudé, Departmental Chairperson of the UFS’s Department of Afro-asiatic Studies, Sign Language and Language Practice.

“Students in these residences are given the opportunity to be trained to interpret during their residence meetings. Four students from each hostel are being trained as interpreters,” said Prof. Naudé.

According to Prof. Naudé both residences have meetings that take place on a Monday evening at 22:00. Interpreting is also provided at the first-year students’ meetings at Emily Hobhouse on Tuesday evenings.

The interpreters experience the interpreting at the residences as positively and they experience that students often do utilise this service. At Roosmaryn 16-18 students are utilising the interpreting service, while at Emily Hobhouse approximately 18 students are utilising the service.

“The interpreting service definitely contributes to the enhancement of communication during residence meetings. Students can exactly follow what is happening during the meetings. In the past a residences like Emily Hobhouse tried to repeat everything in English, which extended the meetings,” Prof. Naudé said.

With the envisaged extension of interpreting services in hostel meetings to all the hostels on the Main Campus in Bloemfontein, there is a need for interpreters as these meetings will take place simultaneously. Through this initiative, exiting new opportunities are created for aspiring interpreters. The training takes place under leadership of Prof. Annelie Lotriet who holds the ATKV Chair in Interpreting in the department.

Aspiring candidates can contact Mr Cobus Snyman, Manager of the UFS’s interpreting projects at 051 401 9005 in connection with the selection criteria for interpreters.

Media Release
Issued by: Lacea Loader
Assistant Director: Media Liaison
Tel: 051 401 2584
Cell: 083 645 2454
E-mail: loaderl.stg@ufs.ac.za
14 October 2007
 

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