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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

Qwaqwa Campus honours academic excellence
2014-05-21


Photo: Sonia Small (Kaleidoscope Studios)

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      Our Qwaqwa Campus was this past weekend a hive of activity when graduates, their parents and well-wishers descended on the campus to honour outstanding academic excellence during the Winter Graduation ceremonies.

      On Friday graduates from the Faculty of Humanities, as well as the Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences, were addressed by Tommy Makhatho, Managing Director of the Qwaqwa-based Bibi Cash and Carry.

      Makhatho urged graduates to continue working hard way beyond their graduation day and to dream big.

      “Dream big and don’t let your poor background hold you back,” Makhatho said.

      “Don’t let people say you can’t or that you will fail. Take up one idea. Make that one idea your life, think of it, dream of it, live on that idea, let your brain, muscle, nerves and every part of your body be full of that idea and leave every other idea alone. This is the way to success. If you don’t build your dream, someone else will hire you to help them build theirs,” said Makhatho, the winner of the 2013 Sanlam/Business Partners Entrepreneur of the Year and Job Creator of the Year awards.

      On Saturday, graduates were treated to yet another moving message by eNCA’s news anchor, Mabale Moloi, herself a graduate in Biological sciences.

      “If there is one ability that we should all practice on a daily basis, it is work ethics. This is a value based on hard work and diligence,” Moloi said.

      Moloi further shared her views on what makes excellent work ethics.

      “There are five very important factors of work ethics that we all need to be aware of. One of them is reliability. This means how committed you are to completing a task that is given to you within a particular period of time,” said Moloi.

      “The second one is dedication. This means how prepared you are to go the extra mile in completing a job or your studies. Thirdly, one’s level of productivity is very important in having an excellent work ethic. This refers to giving the best of yourself, even to the extent of surpassing what is expected of you.”

      “Fourthly, there is co-operation. We all must understand the value of team work and how it leads to success. And this, when paired with character, self-discipline and strong personality, will distinguish you from anyone else,” Moloi added.

      Among the more than 800 degrees, diplomas and certificates conferred, were three PhDs in Physics, Polymer Science and Zoology, respectively. Four Masters of Science degrees were conferred cum laude.

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