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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 Rose Ball promises to be an unforgettable experience
2005-09-08

On Saturday 15 of October 2005, the Department of Paediatrics and Child Health at the University of the Free State (UFS) in collaboration with Medi-Clinic, are hosting a Rose Ball in aid of children and babies with serious diseases and special needs.

The Bloemfontein public should get ready for one of the most magnificent events ever held in the city. 

The Rose Ball promises to offer an evening of glamour, elegance and beauty which will make it an unforgettable and unique event.  The Department aims to make the Rose Ball an annual event to which the Bloemfontein public can look forward to with expectation.

“Excellent food and wine, a 35 man symphony orchestra and of course a magical setting awaits those who attend the Rose Ball.  We will do everything possible to make guests feel special, so that they return to the Rose Ball year after year.  In this way, we can ensure an annual income from this event for children and babies who are very ill and need specialised care,” said Prof. André Venter, Head of the Department of Paediatrics and Child Health.

The Department of Paediatrics and Child Health at the UFS is responsible for the tertiary care, that is highly specialised care, of around 1 000 000 children in the Free State, Northern Cape, North-West, Eastern Cape and Lesotho.  Approximately 13 000 out-patients are treated at the Universitas and Pelonomi Hospitals annually.  Children who suffer from cancer, heart disease, neurological disease and endocrinological and gastro-enterological conditions are treated.  The Department is also responsible for children who need intensive care and children with contagious diseases.  In addition, there is a large neonatal unit where prematurely born babies are treated.

The level of health care needed to treat these children and babies, necessitate highly specialised equipment and knowledge.  However, it is not always possible to replace or upgrade equipment, due to the lack of much-needed funds.  That is why a fund was created within the Department to satisfy the need for funds. The Rose Ball promises to eventually give a vital boost to the fund that will go a long way toward providing in the special healthcare needs of these patients.

The Rose Ball is made possible thanks to the support of Medi-Clinic.

“Medi-Clinic is honoured to be involved in this great effort and in this way take hands with the Department of Paediatrics and Child Health at the UFS.  There are so many children with life-threatening diseases today and we cannot afford to be uninvolved in any effort to make life better and easier for these children.  We at Medi-Clinic, as a private sector company, look forward to establishing a long-term commitment with the Department of Paediatrics and Child Health,” said Mr Sakkie van der Merwe, Hospital Manager of Bloemfontein Medi-Clinic.

Only a limited number of tables are still available for the Rose Ball.  Tickets cost R500 per person or R5 000 per table of 10 people. 

Those who are interested can contact Ms Ilse Olivier at 051-4012415 or Ms Adele van Aswegen at 051-4013535 for more information.

Media release
Issued by:  Lacea Loader
   Media Representative
   Tel:  (051) 401-2584
   Cell:  083 645 2454
   E-mail:  loaderl.stg@mail.uovs.ac.za
8 September 2005
 

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