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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

International delegates attend SACOMM conference at UFS
2016-10-12

Description: SACOMM conference  Tags: SACOMM conference

From the left: Prof Colin Chasi, Chairperson of the
South African Communications Association,
Dr Dalme Mulder UFS Lecturer; Dr Wilmien Marais,
UFS Lecturer; Prof Johann de Wet, former head of
UFS Department of Communication Science
Prof Tom O’Regan, University of Queensland (Australia)
and Prof Milli Rivera, Head of the UFS Department of
Communication Science during the conference on the
UFS Bloemfontein Campus.
Photo: Rulanzen Martin

Communication from within and below: Social Transformation and Inclusiveness. That was the theme of the 2016 South African Communication Association (SACOMM) conference, hosted at the Bloemfontein Campus of the University of the Free State (UFS) from 3 to 5 October 2016.

“Through this theme, participants were invited to submit papers that examined the role of communication in today’s tumultuous climate,” said Prof Mili Rivera, Head of the Department of Communication Science at the UFS.

A total of 140 delegates from other South African universities, as well as international delegates from Zimbabwe, Nigeria, the United Kingdom, United States, and Australia attended the conference. It was the second time in ten years that the UFS hosted the conference.

Organisation to mentor and support emerging scholars
Various staff members and students from the UFS Department of Communication Science presented papers during the three days.

Annette van Baalen and Dr Dalme Mulder, both lecturers in the department, won the best paper award in the Corporate Communication division. A number of emerging scholars also presented papers. “The organisation is committed to mentoring and supporting emerging scholars in the field of Communication Science,” said Prof Rivera.

Association must be agent of change in curriculum
Delegates discussed the role of the organisation (SACOMM) as an agent of change in terms of decolonising the curriculum. The focus was on training journalists to cover crises in a fair and balanced manner. The book The Art of Persuasive Communication - A Process (4th Edition) by Prof Johann de Wet, former head of the UFS Department of Communication Science, was also launched during the conference.

The next SACOMM conference will take place at Rhodes University in 2017.

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