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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

SADoCoL receives partial reinstatement of blood sample testing by the World Anti-Doping Agency
2016-08-22

Last week, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) announced the lifting of the suspension of blood sample analysis by the South African Doping Control Laboratory (SADoCoL) at the University of the Free State (UFS). Although the suspension of urine sample analysis is still under review, the UFS is appreciative of the new outcome. The initial temporary suspension of SADoCoL, announced on 3 May 2016, included the suspension of all doping-control procedures which applied to both urine and blood samples.

The main reason for the suspension involved analytical techniques relevant to urine analysis; however, the testing of blood samples was also included in the suspension. At the time of the suspension, no adverse findings were reported for the laboratory in relation to blood-sample testing for Athlete Blood Passport (ABP) assessment. 

According to the agreement with WADA, the suspension period would be utilised to implement and test new systems in order to achieve the standard presently required by WADA, as well as to perform development and improvements. SADoCoL is a specialised service laboratory of the UFS and has been in existence for more than thirty years.

Upon SADoCoL’s request to lift the suspension of only the ABP analysis, WADA agreed to allow the laboratory to apply for reaccreditation.  SADoCoL immediately applied for reaccreditation of ABP analysis on blood, so that the laboratory would be allowed to at least offer this service to the Anti-Doping community in Africa.

For this purpose, inspections were performed by the South African National Accreditation System (SANAS) and by WADA, during which all aspects of blood analysis by the laboratory were thoroughly assessed and tested.  The successful outcome of these inspections resulted in the reaccreditation of SADoCoL by WADA in order to perform ABP analysis as required by the WADA International Standard for Laboratories, with effect from 4 August 2016. 

This outcome allows the laboratory to once again perform this very essential analytical procedure.  The South African Institute for Drug-Free Sport (SAIDS) and other regular users can now continue to send blood samples to SADoCoL for ABP analysis, instead of making use of alternative laboratories.

 

Released by: Lacea Loader (Director: Communication and Brand Management)
Tel: +27 51 401 3422/2707 or +27 83 645 2454
Email: news@ufs.ac.za  | loaderl@ufs.ac.za
Fax: +27 51 444 6393

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