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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

Medical students enrich lives through community service project
2016-03-18

Description: 2016 03 18 Outreach  Tags: 2016 03 18 Outreach

A group of third-year medical students organised a fun day for Ons Kinderhuis as part of their community service project.

As part of their curriculum, third-year MBChB students are required to complete a community service project in collaboration with a specific NGO in Bloemfontein. Not only do these projects serve an academic requirement, but also echo the spirit of service and compassion emblematic of the Human Project of the University of the Free State (UFS).

 

One group of students chose to pour their time and care into Ons Kinderhuis–home to 100 children with special needs. Since their involvement, these medical students have helped improve the home’s facilities and also hosted various fun days for the staff and children.

 

The latest fun day was celebrated on Saturday 12 March 2016. The festivities were kicked off in the morning by a game of soccer using the brand-new goal posts recently built by the medical students. It was difficult to decide who were more excited – the children or the staff – when some of the Cheetah rugby players joined the event. A slippery slide came in handy to wash off sticky hands and mouths and for little bodies with lots of energy the jumping castle was a perfect answer. Faces were painted and a banner created while music and the smell of the braai floated into the autumn air.

 

“I couldn't help but be proud of my team and thankful for this opportunity,” said Willem Potgieter, one of the student volunteers. Seeing the smiles on the children’s faces made it all worthwhile. “It was truly a humbling and a great learning experience for each and every one of us,” Willem said.

 

This group of medical students consist of Burger Oosthuizen, Marié Engelbrecht, Lourens Badenhorst, Dirki Wessels, Roodt Ehlers, Shirley-Louise du Plessis, Mariet Geldenhuys, Louise-Mari Zietsman and Willem Potgieter.

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