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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

Quantity Surveying celebrates many firsts
2014-10-20

 

From the left are: Pierre Oosthuizen, Prof Kajimo-Shakantu and Dr Stephan Ramabodu
Photo: Ifa Tshishonge



The Department of Quantity Surveying at the University of the Free State (UFS) has much to be proud of. With Prof Kahilu Kajimo-Shakantu as Head of the Department of Quantity Surveying, the department is celebrating several firsts.

For the first time, the department has four academics with PhDs. This includes Prof Kajimo-Shakantu, Dr Stephan Ramabodu, Dr Timothy Froise and Dr Benita Zulch. It is also the first time that this department is managed by a woman.

Furthermore, the Department of Quantity Surveying has performed very well at this year’s national Quantity Surveying Conference held in Pretoria, where they walked away with four of the seven awards.

The awards were:

•    Best presenter: Pierre Oosthuizen (lecturer)
•    Most innovative presenter: Pierre Oosthuizen (lecturer)
•    Best paper on engineering projects: Prof Kahilu Kajimo-Shakantu
•    Best academic paper: T Monyane (postgraduate student) and Dr Stephan Ramabodu (lecturer)

The South African Council for the Quantity Surveying Profession (SACQSP) also presented two prestigious life achievement awards. One of these were bestowed upon Prof Basie Verster from the UFS for his contribution to quantity surveying since the 1970s.

The university is especially proud of Dr Stephen Ramabodu, lecturer in the Department of Quantity Surveying, who completed his PhD this year. This makes of him the highest qualified quantity surveyor in the department and one of only a few holders of a quantity surveying PhD in the country. Dr Ramabodu is also registered with the South African Council for Quantity Surveying Professionals.

Prof Kajimo-Shakantu said the following of Dr Ramabodu. “Since 2002, Stephan was appointed as a lecturer in a programme called Grow Your Own Timber at the UFS. Later on, he went to Cape Town to gain some commercial experience, where he worked for Davis Langdon in 2005. In 2008, he returned to the Free State, where he established Ramabodu & Associates. Later on in the same year, he returned to the UFS as a lecturer to complete all the remaining milestones of the Grow Your Own Timber programme.

“The university looks forward to Stephen’s increased responsibilities and contributions, not only in teaching and learning, but also in research, mentoring and community engagement.”


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