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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 academic leaves for national parliament
2009-05-28

The Head of the Department of Afro-asiatic Studies, Sign Language and Language Practice at the University of the Free State (UFS), Prof Annelie Lotriet (pictured), is leaving the university at the end of this month.

Prof Lotriet has been seconded to the national parliament as a member of the Democratic Alliance’s shadow cabinet responsible for arts and culture.

“I am very sad to go because I think I am leaving the university at a point where there are many changes coming and I think we are going to go into a very interesting and challenging time at this university with our new rector taking office one of these days,” she said.

“On that point I am actually sad that I am not going to be here to experience it because I think the university has all the potential to become one of the main role players in higher education in South Africa and, obviously, I will be watching it with interest.”

Prof Lotriet has worked for the UFS for 25 years and regards language and multilingualism as her passion. She reflected on her major achievement: “I think what still stands out for me was the fact that we ran the interpreting service for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and that made an indelible impact on my life. We were involved in it right from the start to the end. We really put interpreting on the map.”

Mr Philemon Akach, a senior lecturer in the department, will act in her position until the end of the year.

“I have full confidence in him,” she said. “He is a world-renowned expert in interpreting and sign language, so I think the department is in good hands.”

Media Release:
Mangaliso Radebe
Assistant Director: Media Liaison
Tel: 051 401 2828
Cell: 078 460 3320
E-mail: radebemt.stg@ufs.ac.za
28 May 2009




 

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