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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 warmly welcomes prospective students at Open Day
2016-05-19

Description: 2016-05-14 Open Day Blfn Tags: 2016-05-14 Open Day Blfn

Prospective students of 2017 were treated to an Open Day filled with various activities on the Bloemfontein Campus of the University of the Free State.
Photo: Johan Roux

"There is a great deal of political and financial pressure on universities in South Africa, and that is exactly why the country’s future leaders need to be trained at the top universities."

With these words, Prof Jonathan Jansen, Vice-Chancellor and Rector of the University of the Free State (UFS), welcomed prospective students in the Callie Human Centre on the Bloemfontein Campus as part of the Open Day held on 14 May 2016. The UFS is a place where students can fulfil their dreams.

Learners were welcomed warmly on a cold day filled with various activities, and invited to become part of the Kovsie family. Prospective students were treated to many surprises, like a laser show and a performance by South African Music Award-nominated artist, Kyle Deutsch, who performed his popular crowd hit, ‘Back to the beach’, at the informal welcoming ceremony.

Examples of true Kovsies

Prof Jansen said at the official welcoming that graduating from the UFS does two things: It gives a student a Kovsie degree, and it helps to make them decent human beings in a divided country. He encouraged the learners to be as humble as the World 400m champion, Wayde van Niekerk, and to love without borders like Tanya Calitz, the Kovsie Dux of 2015. They are examples of what it means being a true Kovsie.

An information centre – which included on-site applications and a stall with KovsieGear merchandise – was stationed in the H van der Merwe Scholtz Hall, while residences and student associations also had stalls on campus. In the Main Building, parents were able to meet Prof Jansen.

Deans and faculties encourage

Apart from various presentations and interaction with staff, the learners were also welcomed by the deans of their faculties. Prof Danie Vermeulen, Dean of the Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences, said they must study what they love. “Live your own dream. That is why you come to university.”

“The UFS Faculty of Education is a training centre for leaders. We develop leaders with a commitment to serving the community,” said Prof Sechaba Mahlomaholo, Dean of the Faculty of Education.

Click here to see a highlights video of the Bloemfontein Campus Open Day, or here for a video of the Qwaqwa Campus Open Day.

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