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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

A Kovsie parade through Bloemfontein's streets
2014-02-04


Photo: Albert van Biljon

The community of Bloemfontein came out in numbers to watch the annual Kovsie Rag procession on Saturday 1 February 2014. Young and old lined the roads around the Bloemfontein Campus to get a glimpse of the colourful floats moving through the city’s streets. Onlookers showed their support for the UFS’s charitable fun drive, dropping coins in the money tins of first-year students who made their way through the crowds.

Celebrating the hard work of students who spent hours building floats, festivities kicked off with a morning parade to Heidedal and Mangaung. Here the Rag Office distributed 10 000 meals to members of the community.

With a beloved Hollywood panda as their inspiration, JBM, Soetdoring and Imperium residences were crowned winners of the movie-themed float-building competition later the evening. Their Kung Fu Panda float led the way as the main procession made its way to the Chevrolet Cricket Stadium for a night of celebration with music stars Mango Groove, Zakes Bantwini and Robbie Wessels.  

Mango Groove had the audience on their feet playing well-known hits like Special Star, Moments Away and Hometalk. Robbie Wessels and Bantwini also didn't disappoint, with the audience stomping feet to their music. In addition, partygoers were treated to an amazing fireworks display that lightened up the Bloemfontein night sky.

Float-building results: 

  • Overall winners: JBM, Soetdoring and Imperium 
  • Winners Pool A: JBM, Soetdoring and Imperium
  • Winners Pool B: Welwitchia and Tswelopele 

The overall assessment of floats was made up of 100 points. The impression of the floats on the little ones was very important, as children judges awarded 25% of the score. They gave a mark out of 10 and it was converted to a mark out of 25.

The assessment by the adult judges counted for 75 points. The criteria were as follows:

  • General impression and colour: 25 points
  • Detail: 25 points
  • Did the float complement the theme: 15 points

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