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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

UFS appoints new head for Research Commercialisation and Business Development
2009-02-27

The University of the Free State (UFS) has appointed Dr Glen Taylor (pictured) as the new head of the Office for Research Commercialisation and Business Development.

The purpose of this new office is to optimize the commercialization of innovation and intellectual property at the UFS.

According to Dr Taylor, the core function of this office is to establish a sustainable third stream of income from intellectual property in order to diversify the funding base of the University. In essence, the office is responsible for the facilitation of technology transfer.

Aside from the normal aspects associated with technology transfer, such as innovation disclosure, intellectual property protection (patenting) and licensing, a rather broader approach of transferring knowledge to a user in society will also be sought.

“It is evident that the funding environment has changed significantly due to a shift in priorities from public funded agencies, which have impacted hugely on tertiary education,” said Dr Taylor. “Furthermore, due to the changes in the state funding of universities, there is more pressure on these institutions to become financially self-sufficient.”

“So in the light of these challenges, universities as generators of knowledge have a fundamental role to play in the knowledge society, and through the process of innovation and intellectual property development there must be value to the institutions and the individuals.”

Dr Taylor is the former Head of the Department of Agricultural Management and manager of research, technology and innovation activities on the George Campus of the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University.

The Office for Research Commercialisation and Business Development was established at the beginning of 2009.

26 February 2009
 

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