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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

First book on Bloemfontein published in 25 years
2008-10-21

 

During the launch of the book "Spatialities of Urban Change" are, from the left, front: Mr Malefetsane Mokoena, General Manager: Housing at the Mangaung Local Municipality and one of the co-authors of the book, Mr Amos Goliath, Executive Director: Corporate Affairs at the Mangaung Local Municipality, Ms Rothea van Biljon, Chairperson of the Afrikaanse Handelsinstituut Bloemfontein; back: Prof. Lochner Marais, editor of the book from the Centre for Development Support at the UFS, and Prof. Gustav Visser, editor of the book from the Department of Geography at the UFS. Photo Stephen Collett

 The University of the Free State (UFS) has published a book on Bloemfontein for the first time in 25 years. The book, titled “Spatialities of Urban Change”, is the first South African scholarly account in book form of spatial themes on urban change in a secondary city in South Africa. The book was recently launched on the Main Campus in Bloemfontein.

The editors of the book are Prof. Lochner Marais from the Centre for Development Support and Prof. Gustav Visser from the Department of Geography, both from the UFS. Their co-authors are five Ph.D. students in Development Studies, one Ph.D. student in Geography and one master’s student in Development Studies.

According to Prof. Visser, there is a gap in the market for new perspectives on how cities work and how urban theory can develop. This book will contribute to filling that gap. The book also manages to involve students and their research – giving them the opportunity to have their research published.

The book addresses various aspects of Bloemfontein’s spatiality and issues such as suburbanization and the subsequent decline of the central business district, the city’s tourism potential and the impact of the Volksblad Arts Festival on re-imaging the city as a place that has something to offer any visitor, are discussed among others. Other topics include the suburb Westdene and how diverse spatiality manifests itself at this scale, and white flight from the inner city areas.

“A central theme running through the book is how the urban discourse of Bloemfontein relate to the country’s metropolitan core and conversely to other secondary cities,“ says Prof. Visser.

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
22 October 2008

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