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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

Stakeholders endorse UFS’s vision and strategy
2014-05-27

Results from a perception audit commissioned by the University of the Free State (UFS) in February 2014 have been finalised. The audit indicates that 86,14% of the university’s internal and external stakeholders agree with the institution's stated vision. An average of 81,99% of stakeholders endorse our values and 81,28% agree with our goals. 

The study was commissioned by the university's Department of Communication and Brand Management and conducted by an external firm of independent researchers. It was aimed at determining internal and external stakeholder understanding and endorsement of university strategy, as well as tracking core reputational indicators and perceptions.

The study was conducted among a representative sample of 23 stakeholder groupings, including staff, current and prospective students, donors, alumni, school principals, community leaders, potential employers of students and international partner universities.

Two similar audits were conducted in the last ten years – in 2005 and again in 2008 after the Reitz incident. Although a direct comparison of findings would not be psychometrically rigorous due to differing research modelling and sampling methods, there is a strong indication that the perception of the institution's stakeholders has shifted.

The uniqueness of the study and the research model developed for the project have recently received international recognition from the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC). The prestigious Jack Whittmer Research Award was presented to the university on 9 June 2014 during the Excellence Awards Gala of the association's world conference held in Toronto, Canada.

Read the full release (pdf)

 

 

Issued by: Lacea Loader (Director: Communication and Brand Management)
Tel: +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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