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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

2015 Erasmus Mundus Grantees announced
2015-07-07


Front row, from the left: Frans Kruger, Lecturer: School of Education Studies; Trudie Strauss, Lecturer, Mathematical Statistics and Actuarial Science
Back row, from the left: Johnathan Adams, Teaching Assistant: Centre for Teaching and Learning; Moliehi Rosemary Mpeli, Lecturer: School of Nursing; Ncedo Xhala, Research Assistant: Quantity Surveying and Construction Management.
Photo: Mamosa Makaya

The grantees of the 2015 Erasmus Mundus programme have been announced, and will soon head off to various institutions at European universities to embark on academic and professional exchange programmes. The cohort is made up of some of the best, most talented staff of the university, who are currently studying towards master’s and PhD programmes in fields such as Mathematics and Actuarial Sciences, Quantity Surveying, Bioethics, and Education.

The Erasmus Mundus programme is an international partnership that enhances academic cooperation between institutions of higher education in South Africa and the European Union, and has within it the EUROSA, EU Saturn and INSPIRE programmes. It aims to promote inter-cultural understanding, and the development of both European and Third-Country universities.  The UFS has participated in the programme since 2010. In 2014, 13 staff members were granted PhD and master’s study programmes for a period of up to 22 months in various fields such as Communication Science, Urban and Regional Planning and Law, at among others, the Universities of Ghent, Antwerp Tilburg and Uppsala.

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