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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

Wayde claims gold and silver at IAAF World Championships in London
2017-08-11

 Description: Getty Wayde Tags: Wayde van Niekerk, IAAF World Championships, Michael Johnson, Prof Francis Petersen, 200 m/400 m double 

The Olympic champion, Wayde van Niekerk, continued
his superb form over the past few months when he
won a gold medal in the 400 m and a silver in the 200 m
at the IAAF World Championships in London.
Photo: Getty Images



This is just the beginning. These were the words of an emotional Wayde van Niekerk after he completed one of the best weeks in his young career at the IAAF World Championships.

The 25-year-old Kovsie star claimed a gold medal in the 400 m in London, England, on 8 August 2017, and added a silver in the 200 m on 10 August 2017.
 
Furthermore, he was only 0.02 seconds away (in the 200 m) from achieving a 200 m/400 m double – something which was last done in 1995 at a World Championship by Michael Johnson. Van Niekerk won the 400 m in London in 43.98 s, and two days later his 20.106 s was enough for a silver in the 200 m. Ramil Guliyev from Turkey was first in 20.09 s.

Role model for Kovsie community
Once again Van Niekerk’s achievements warmed the hearts back home at the University of the Free State (UFS). “This is an extremely proud moment not only for the country, but in particular for the University of the Free State. Wayde is a role model for the entire Kovsie community, and we have been following his achievements in the international arena with great excitement. We are elated by his performances. Congratulations also to Tannie Ans and his management team,” Prof Francis Petersen, Rector and Vice-Chancellor of the UFS, said. 

So much more ahead, says star
“I really feel I worked hard for tonight and I gave it my all. And I think I have proven over and over again I deserve what I have achieved. It was a tough week for me,” Van Niekerk said in an interview with the BBC. “I am glad that I could come out again today and put on a good fight. I really believe this is just the beginning of so much more I can achieve.”

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