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29 March 2019 | Story Lacea Loader

No deregistration of students at the University of the Free State (UFS) will be effected until after the Financial Appeals Committee has concluded its process on 5 April 2019.

During a meeting between the university management and the Institutional Student Representative Council (ISRC) today, the following agreement was reached:

  1. The date for the submission of appeals has been extended to Tuesday 2 April 2019 at 12:00. No further extension will be given. The application form for the Financial Appeals Committee has previously been sent to the ufs4life email addresses of all provisionally registered students.
  2. Students who have appealed their National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) outcomes will not be deregistered while awaiting the result of the outcome of their appeal.
  3. Verified final-year students who are provisionally registered will not be deregistered. This will be subject to verification by the Financial Appeals Committee. These students must also submit an appeal.
  4. All other categories of students must submit their appeals to the Financial Appeals Committee.

NB: The documentation mentioned above must be submitted to the Student Finance Office as indicated on the financial appeals form sent to students via their ufs4life email address.

The UFS has taken a pro-poor approach to assist students who are academically deserving. With this approach, the university’s fee structure is much less than that of many public institutions of higher learning in the country. Senior students are also supported through a provisional registration process that grants them the opportunity to pay a reduced amount in order to register, enabling them to fully participate in all activities while extension is provided to secure the necessary funding for their studies.

The university has made a number of concessions to ensure that students are not financially excluded during the 2019 academic year. Many of these concessions were raised by the ISRC on behalf of students and was agreed upon by the university management.  

These concessions include:

  1. Students who have confirmed NSFAS funding for 2019 with historic debt, are to secure registration. This has taken place before the announcement on 24 March 2019 by the Minister of Higher Education and Training, Naledi Pandor, that the historic debt of NSFAS students will be settled by the department.

     

  2. Students in the missing middle who received a gap grant in 2018, have been assisted to pay a lesser amount to register fully for 2019.

     

  3. Students with historic debt who are not receiving the gap grant have also been assisted to register for 2019. Acceptable payment plans for these students have been agreed upon with the university’s Student Finance Office.

     

  4. First-time entering students were assisted with a reduced first payment to enable them to register for 2019.

     

  5. Final-year students with historic debt of less than R20 000 who could not have been assisted in any of the above concessions explained above were allowed to register.

     

  6. Students who are provisionally registered and who could not find the necessary financial means, had the opportunity to submit appeals to the Financial Appeals Committee by 29 March 2019 to secure their registration. This committee comprises representatives of the university management, as well as members of the ISRC. This committee is scheduled to meet on 5 April 2019.

The above is evidence of the multi-layered efforts by the university to support academic deserving students as far as it is practically possible in order to avoid financial exclusion. Additionally, the university’s Student Finance Office has since the beginning of the academic year communicated extensively on the process with students who are at risk of being deregistered.  

Historically, less than 0,5% of registered students at the UFS are not able to find the necessary means to secure their registration.

To support students in their academic efforts, all matters pertaining to registration should be concluded by the end of the first term. A cut-off date is set by which all registration processes – including concessions – are to be concluded. This date – 31 March 2019 – has already been set in 2018, which is the result of consultation with all relevant stakeholders, including the IRSC.

This cut-off date has now been extended to Tuesday 2 April 2019 at 12:00.

Released by:

Lacea Loader (Director: Communication and Marketing)
Telephone: +27 51 401 2584 | +27 83 645 2454
Email: news@ufs.ac.za | loaderl@ufs.ac.za
Fax: +27 51 444 6393



News Archive

First doctorate in Thoracic Surgery in Africa awarded
2009-05-12

The University of the Free State (UFS) has become the first university in Africa to award a Ph.D. degree in Thoracic Surgery. The degree was conferred on Prof. Anthony Linegar from the university’s Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery during its recent graduation ceremony.

Thoracic surgery is a challenging subspecialty of cardiothoracic surgery. It began in South Africa in the 1940s and is a broad medico-surgical specialist discipline that involves the diagnosis, operative and peri-operative treatment of acquired and congenital non-cardiac ailments of the chest.

Prof. Linegar became the first academic to conduct a mixed methods analysis of this surgical specialty, which included a systematic review of all the research done in this field in South Africa. The title of his thesis is A Model for the Development of Thoracic Surgery in Central South Africa. The research was based on the hypothesis of a performance gap between the burden of disease in the community and the actual service provision. It makes use of systems theory and project management concepts to develop a model aimed at the development of thoracic surgery.

The research proved that there is a significant under provision of clinical services in thoracic surgery. This was quantified to a factor of 20 times less than should be the case, in diseases such as lung and oesophagus cancer. According to Prof. Linegar, there are multiple reasons for this. Listed amongst these reasons is the fact that thoracic surgery is not part of the undergraduate education in medical training. There tends to be a low level of awareness amongst clinicians as to what the thoracic surgeon offers their patients. The diagnostic and referral patterns in primary and secondary health facilities, where diseases must be picked up and referred early, are not functioning well in this regard. In addition, relatively few cardiothoracic surgeons express an interest in thoracic surgery.

Prof. Linegar’s model is named the ATLAS Mode, which is an acronym for the Advancement of Thoracic Surgery through Analysis and Strategic Planning. It includes the raising of awareness of the role of the specialist thoracic surgeon in the treatment of patients with thoracic diseases as part of the solution to the problem. Furthermore, it aims to develop an accessible and sustainable specialist service that adequately provides for the needs of the community, and that is appropriately represented in health administration circles.

His promoters were Prof. Gert van Zyl, Head of the School of Medicine at the UFS, Prof. Peter Goldstraw, from the Imperial College of London, United Kingdom (UK) and Prof. Francis Smit, Head of the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery at the UFS.

Prof. Linegar has been with the UFS since 2004, is a graduate from Stellenbosch University in 1984 and completed his postgraduate training in Cardiothoracic Surgery at the University of Cape Town. He was granted a Fellowship in Thoracic Surgery at the Royal Brompton Hospital in London, UK and has since held consultant positions at the UFS, Stellenbosch University and in private practice. He has been involved in registrar training since returning from the UK in 1994 and has extensive experience in intensive care medicine. He has published widely, has presented papers at many international conferences, has been invited as a speaker on many occasions and has won awards for best presentation on three occasions.

Media Release
Issued by: Lacea Loader
Assistant Director: Media Liaison
Tel: 051 401 2584
Cell: 083 645 2454
E-mail: loaderl.stg@ufs.ac.za  
12 May 2009
 

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