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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

UFS researcher runner-up in 2014 Women in Science Awards
2014-08-18

 

Prof Jeanet Conradie
Photo: Supplied

Prof Jeanet Conradie, professor in the Department of Chemistry at the University of the Free State (UFS), was the runner up in the senior category for Distinguished Women Researchers: Physical and Engineering Science in the Department of Science and Technology’s 2014 Women in Science Awards. With this award, female scientists and researchers are encouraged and rewarded, and also profiled as role models for younger women. 
 
Science and research, by which new concepts are discovered, is her great passion. Due to this keen interest in science, Prof Conradie studied a variety of subjects during her undergraduate years, providing her with a vast knowledge and the necessary background for her current main research interest, which is a combination of various scientific fields. Her PhD in Chemistry, as well as her strong background in Physics, Computer Science, Mathematics and Applied Maths, influenced her choice of research interest and expertise to gradually develop in the direction of computational chemistry, which is a beautiful combination of chemistry and physics. 
 
Today, Prof Conradie’s research expertise is in computational chemistry, using the super computer and appropriate software to simulate, understand and predict the behaviour of atoms and molecules in real life. The use of computational chemistry makes it possible to study chemical reactions and phenomena that are impossible or too dangerous to study experimentally. Her research team also performs experimental work in the laboratory to combine and compare with the computational analysis. Based on the results obtained, new materials with specific properties are developed. 
 
“We are very proud of Prof Conradie. This award is the result of 14 years of hard word, a lot of it after hours. We are fortunate to have someone like you as colleague who puts guidance to students and learners first in research, teaching and community service,” said Prof André Roodt, Head of the Department of Chemistry at the UFS. 
 
Prof Corli Witthuhn, Vice-Rector: Research said: “Prof Conradie serves as a role model for younger academic scholars in higher education through her motivation, productivity and drive. She also serves as an example of how female scientist can reach the top of their profession while juggling both professional and family responsibilities. This is well deserved recognition for her outstanding research achievements”

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