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29 January 2019 | Story Xolisa Mnukwa | Photo Anja Aucamp
Prof Francis Petersen speech
“We can create an institution that operates and lives in the times of embracing and celebrating diversity, inclusivity, and academic excellence by ensuring that students own their time at university,” said Prof Francis Petersen.

25 January 2019 marked the official welcoming of the University of the Free State’s (UFS) first-year students, as they moved into their respective residences and were warmly welcomed on the UFS Bloemfontein Campus. This day also marked the start of the registration process for first-year students.

According to first-year Psychology student Keisha Claasen, who moved into her residence earlier on 25 January, her first experience of the UFS was daunting but exciting, as she had never been in a similar environment. According to Given Gwerera, who dropped his son off at the Karee residence earlier the day, “the UFS is an institution with great culture and an overall good academic record.” He further explained that he trusts his son to make full use of the opportunities presented to him, as he has a cool head on his shoulders.

On the evening of 25 January, an eager group of millennials, joined by their parents, took the first sip from their cup of varsity life as they assembled on the Red Square of the Bloemfontein Campus to meet the Rector and Vice-Chancellor, Prof Francis Petersen, members of Rectorate, the deans of all faculties, and the Student Representative Council (SRC) of the UFS.

“2019 will be a year of continued change; the UFS is thrilled about the prospect of bringing about opportunities for adaptation and realignment to the future,” said Prof Francis Petersen.

He further explained that the university prides itself in moulding its students into well-rounded individuals who will develop into globally competitive graduates as required in a diversity of landscapes. Prof Petersen urged first-years to remain open to the technological developments that go with globalisation, because of its permanent effects on society today.

First-years were further advised to take advantage of the rich pool of academic research and knowledge that is characteristic of the university and is piloted by UFS scholars, by engaging with and learning from them.

The inspiring night concluded on a colourful note, as the audience enjoyed an artistic laser show in front of the Main Building. Caption:

“UFS academics conduct research that forces the world to take note,” said Prof Francis Petersen at the official first-year welcoming ceremony on the UFS Bloemfontein Campus.

News Archive

Meet our Council: Passionate, progressive, and positive – Councillor Itumeleng Pooe
2017-07-13

Description: Itumeleng Pooe Tags: Itumeleng Pooe.  University Council, ambitiously entrepreneurial, progressive university, passionate about life 

Itumeleng Pooe, member of the UFS Council.
Photo: Johan Roux

Passionate, progressive, and unfailingly positive are the words coming to mind when one meets Itumeleng Pooe.  

Itumeleng was appointed to the University Council by the Minister of Education last year.  She is an alumna of North-West University and served as council member and deputy chair of the NWU Council from 2007 until 2014.  She also serves on the board of the Cape Town Hotel School.

Sees UFS as a very progressive university in the higher-education landscape

She is currently employed by the South African Maritime Agency, working at developing integrated national marine tourism and leisure.  In her own words, she is “ambitiously entrepreneurial” and also sells wine privately, working towards distributing amazing and exquisite South African wine in Africa.  

Itumeleng views the UFS as a very progressive university and a rising giant in the higher-education landscape in South Africa.

“I take my role as council member very seriously. I hope to use my marketing and communication expertise to propel the university’s brand as one of the most special places to study in Africa.  Internationalisation is also imperative and I believe I have a lot to offer in this regard,” she says.

Believes that transformation should be at the core of the university’s business
She also feels that transformation should be at the core of the university’s business and that it should remain ongoing.

Itumeleng is a very proud mother to two young adults; Kamogelo is a UCT BCom (Accounting) graduate and Kago studies digital marketing at Vega in Cape Town.

“I am an ardent hiker, reader, perpetual traveller and lover of exotic destinations, and aspiring cook. Honestly? I am just passionate about life,” she says.

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