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21 May 2019 | Story Thabo Kessah | Photo Ian van Straaten
Dr Thandi Gumede
Dr Thandi Gumede graduated with a PhD in Polymer Science. She is from Intabazwe, Harrismith.

The Qwaqwa Campus of the University of the Free State was a hive of activity on 17 and 18 May 2019, when over 800 degrees, diplomas, and certificates were conferred on deserving achievers. These included six PhDs and 14 master’s degrees across the four faculties.

Congratulating the graduates on both days, was Africa’s youngest PhD and Industrial Psychology lecturer, Dr Musawenkosi Saurombe, and Prof Francis Petersen, Rector and Vice-Chancellor.

Be like heat

Dr Saurombe started her address by relating her school journey that saw her starting Grade 1 at age 5, thus later matriculating at the age of 15, having skipped Grades 3 and 10. She went on to emphasise the importance of building an honourable character.

“As a graduate, you will soon realise that your degree is useless if you do not have character,” she said to an attentive audience that continued to marvel at her remarkable school history. She encouraged graduates to be like heat that cannot be seen but can only be felt. “Noise can often be seen and heard, but it cannot be felt. However, while heat cannot always be seen, it is always felt. Be like heat and may your presence always be felt,” she said.

Do not focus on yourself

Prof Francis Petersen also encouraged graduates to look beyond their degrees by developing a set of critical values.
 
“For us as the university, this ceremony is not just about your degrees. It is about the values that you must live by,” he said. “As a graduate of the UFS, do not just believe what you are told. Ask questions and engage critically. Secondly, do not just focus on yourself. Remember that you are part of a community and it is your responsibility to make our world a better place for others. You need to be socially responsive to the needs of your community. Thirdly, remember that integrity plays a very important role. This will determine how others value you,” he said.

The two ceremonies also saw three current SRC members graduating. They are Lebohang Miya (BEd FET – Accounting and Business Studies), Duduzile Mhlongo (BA – Geography and isiZulu), and Mhlongo Sinemfundo (BA – Geography and isiZulu).

News Archive

Two Kovsies play sevens rugby for SA
2009-05-29

The University of the Free State (UFS) has two players in the South African Sevens Rugby Team. Robert Ebersohn, B Comm General Management student and Philip Snyman, B Agric student, have been wearing the green and gold since October 2008 and represented South Africa at a number of tournaments, amongst others in Dubai, George SA, Wellington New Zealand, San Diego in the USA, Hong Kong, Adelaide Australia, London England and Edinburgh in Scotland.

Both players played in the tournaments and their performance in the team was exceptional. The last match that Robert played was on Sunday, 24 May 2009 during the semi-final against New Zealand at Twickenham in England. He will miss the last match in Scotland because he will join the SA U-20 group to practice for the World Championships in Japan.

Four Kovsie rugby players represented the UFS in the South African Student Sevens Rugby team that toured France. They are Johan van Niekerk, Wouter Stieger, Lionel Cronjé and Marlin Ruiters. Due to a concussion Marlin could not join the tour.

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