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03 April 2019 | Story Xolisa Mnukwa | Photo Vhugala Nthakheni
Uhuru Qwaqwa Arrival
The #UFSWalkToUhuru team arrives at the UFS Qwaqwa Campus on Friday 22 March.

The University of the Free State (UFS) Division of Student Affairs, in collaboration with the UFS Office for International Affairs, have joined hands to drive a fundraising and student-accessibility initiative dubbed, ‘The Walk to Uhuru’ (#UFSWalktoUhuru), which is aimed at raising funds and advocating for the educational rights of the less privileged. 

The project aims to raise funds in excess of R2 million from the public and stakeholders affiliated with the UFS (Kovsie staff and students). The project derives from the 2018/2019 UFS Institutional Student Representative Council (ISRC) mandate ‘Students Must Graduate’. The ISRC mandate aims to source funding opportunities for UFS students to register, and to complete their studies across all three campuses in 2020 and beyond.

The first leg of the project, a 350 km walk from the Bloemfontein to the Qwaqwa Campus, has already taken place and concluded on Friday, 22 March 2019 as planned. The #UFSWalkToUhuru team successfully completed the first leg of their journey to academic freedom for financially disadvantaged students at the UFS. The Uhuru team is now focusing its attention on the second leg and is determined to take on Mount Kilimanjaro (Uhuru) from 20 June to 20 July 2019.

The team sat down for a debriefing session to unpack the overall experience and result of the first half of the initiative, and they all agreed that the walk to Qwaqwa was an enlightening experience. It was a walk that comprised learning opportunities, team building, and goal crushing.

According to Rethabile Motseki, member of the #UFSWalkToUhuru team, the walk to Qwaqwa made a significant impact on the project, as the university community is now aware of the significant goals that the team is trying to accomplish. The team has also resumed their fitness-training programme to ensure that they are ready to take on the Uhuru climb in June.

A media briefing will take place shortly (date to be confirmed) to detail the ongoing fundraising initiatives rolled out by the #UFSWalkToUhuru team.  We implore you, and the nation as a whole, to help establish a better future for disadvantaged UFS students by donating to the initiative.

Students, staff, and the public can support the cause and make contributions/donations to the initiative by visiting the UFS Walk to Uhuru #givengain account page.

For more information, contact UFS SRC President, Sonwabile Dwaba, on DwabaSJ@ufs.ac.za  or Rethabile Motseki on MotsekiR@ufs.ac.za  

News Archive

Prof Frederick Fourie to step down: Statement by the Acting Rector, Prof Teuns Verschoor
2008-09-08

Following the announcement by Prof Frederick Fourie that he is stepping down as vice-chancellor of the University of the Free State (UFS), one cannot help but reflect on the momentous contribution he has made to the development of the UFS.

At the time of his appointment as vice-rector in 1999, the UFS was in a financial crisis. There had been three rounds of staff reductions, there were no funds for equipment or the maintenance of buildings and there was a general mood of despair amongst staff.

With his unique style and talents, and against all odds, as acting rector and as rector from 2003, Prof Fourie succeeded in bringing about a financial turnaround that once again brought hope to the staff of the UFS.

Research improved dramatically, inter alia due to the refurbishment of laboratories and the acquisition of world-class research equipment. General campus infrastructure was significantly upgraded and aesthetically improved, making the physical appearance and quality of the campus and example to other universities.

The university structure was critically analysed in all its dimensions and quality assurance projects were launched to improve the overall package of higher education offerings at the UFS.

Another initiative led to the compilation of a transformation plan that was adopted by the management and the UFS Council and that lays the basis for the years ahead.

Through these and countless other initiatives, Prof Fourie has contributed significantly to the establishment of the UFS as a nationally and internationally recognised higher education institution.

Prof Fourie has laid the foundations for the next period of academic growth and development, the value of which will only be appreciated in its full significance in historical perspective.

The UFS is saddened that the high intensity of change management processes has taken its toll on the rector, but is deeply thankful for the legacy that he leaves.

We wish Prof Fourie many productive years ahead and have faith that his remarkable intellect and capabilities will enable him to make many more contributions to the betterment of South African society.

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  
8 September 2008
 

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