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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

FASSET students on South Campus urged to ‘position themselves for success’
2016-08-31

Description: FASSET prize-giving Tags: FASSET prize-giving

Boniswa Segoe with Tshegofatso Setilo at the FASSET
prize-giving. Boniswa received two separate accolades
on the day for her academic achievements.
Photo: Charl Devenish

On 12 August 2016, 125 FASSET-funded students on South Campus were rewarded for their first-semester efforts during a ceremony “to celebrate hard work, dedication, and excellence”, according to Lerato Sekonyela, who chaired the event. FASSET is the Finance and Accounting Services Sector Education and Training Authority. This sector is the largest employer of people with financial skills. “One of FASSET’s many objectives is to develop the competence of employees, resulting not only in an incredible level of training , but also in an improvement in the quality of life for many,” according to Tshegofatso Setilo, Manager: University Preparation Programme at the South Campus.

Jean Grundling,
Academic Head at South Campus, welcomed students, as well as the guests, tutors, and facilitators present, saying, “This is a milestone in your learning journey.” Quoting the words of Nelson Mandela, “A good head and good heart are always a formidable combination”, Grundling added, “Never stop learning, but also look at the compassion in your hearts.”

Tania Lee, projects director at FASSET, explained how funding is obtained from the financial sector. Ms Lee also expanded on the various projects FASSET is undertaking; from the lowest level, where schoolchildren are provided adequate career guidance, through TVET support by means of learnerships, to a full bursary scheme planned for next year.

Ms Lee advised: “Position yourself for success.” Using an analogy from an athletics event at the recent Rio Olympic Games, she exhorted students to take up a position like a runner in a relay race, poised and ready to sprint off after receiving the baton. She urged: “Aspire to become the heroes for our country.”

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