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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

Gauteng business community experiences UFS
2010-09-23

Prof. Matie Hoffman from the Department of Physics of the UFS, presenting at the Boyden Observatory to a group of business executives from Gauteng, during their recent visit to the university.
Photo: Gerhard Louw

The University of the Free State’s (UFS) Corporate Liaison Office recently hosted a group of eleven business men and women from the private sector in Gauteng on its Main Campus in Bloemfontein. The purpose of the campus visits, which are held two to three times a year, is to give representatives from the corporate sector the opportunity to get to know the UFS first-hand and to help build the brand of the university as a national asset.

During their visit the group of business men and women, amongst others, met with faculty members, they enjoyed a networking session with UFS staff at the Oliewenhuis Art Museum, visited the Unit for Students with Disabilities as well as the Department of Paediatrics and Child Health.

The day ended at the Boyden Observatory where a feedback session was facilitated by Prof. Jonathan Jansen, Rector and Vice-Chancellor, and Prof. Ezekiel Moraka, Vice-Rector: External Relations. After this opportunity where the visitors discussed their experience of the UFS, the day came to an end with a presentation on: The African skies: Stories and science by a Ph.D. candidate from the Department of Physics, Mr Bosco Oruru. One of the highlights of the evening included a sighting of the Hubble Telescope in the sky over Bloemfontein and observing the moon and Venus through one of the Boyden telescopes.

The visitors left with new insights and a great appreciation for the contribution of the UFS to education, research and community service in South Africa.

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