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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

Renewal process in JBM Hertzog Residence
2014-03-19

In February 2014, the JBM Hertzog residence community initiated a process of renewal. The review and reassessment of university symbols and traditions is nothing new; it takes place on a regular basis through the institution.

This means that various conversations take place to consult students on the evaluation of their residence’s values, symbols, systems and traditions in a changing South Africa. The university is deeply committed to continuously renewing its residence cultures through focused conversations in order to be more inspiring and welcoming to all students. The involvement of students in co-creating such spaces remains paramount.

The university regrets the deliberate and misleading information in the media on the process underway in JBM. The importance of student involvement consequently calls for the distribution of accurate information in order to avoid uncertainties, misunderstandings and incorrect perceptions.

It is therefore important to state the following regarding the current renewal process in JBM Hertzog:

1. No memorabilia or photos have been removed, and no final decisions have been taken in this regard. These decisions form an integral part of the consultation process described above.

2. The name of the residence (among other symbols) is part of the consultation process. It is also important to note that all suggested name changes at the UFS are subject to the approval of the institutional Naming Committee and the University Council.

3. The perception that this process is being used to eliminate certain unique cultural identities is incorrect. However, what this process aims to achieve is a more inclusive and welcoming residence culture, and throughout this will be done in consultation with all students.

All current residents of JBM Hertzog are invited to form part of this renewal process. In conclusion, the UFS wishes to convey its appreciation to the Residence Committee members and the residents for their positive attitude and continuous support during this very important process.

Prof Jonathan Jansen
Vice-Chancellor and Rector
University of the Free State
 

Issued by: Lacea Loader (Director: Communication and Brand Management)
Telephone: +27(0)51 401 2584 or +27 (0) 83 645 2454
E-mail: news@ufs.ac.za
Fax: +27 (0) 51 444 6393

 

 

 

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