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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

Ryk Neethling visits the UFS
2011-02-03

Ryk Neethling
- Photo: Gerhard Steenkamp

Festive, colourful and spirited – this was how the official opening of our newly upgraded swimming pool looked. Olympic swimmer Ryk Neethling, guest of honour at the event, rendered further glamour to the event when he encouraged Kovsies in his opening speech.

“I feel that this pool can be a great institution of learning, just like this university, because the lessons you learn here you can take into your job; lessons of hard work, dedication and never giving up,” said Ryk.

As a result of the money (R4,6 million) that was appropriated by the National Lotto at the end of 2009, the swimming pool now qualifies as an international competition bath (50m in length) with heating. Overflows were also installed at both ends of the bath. Starting blocks and lane ropes were also installed.

Part of the money is also used for research, which will throw light on the nutritional habits and incidents that cause swimming injuries.

According to Mr Mickey Gordon, Head: Corporate Affairs, Institutional Advancement and Sport, it is strategically important to invest in a high-quality facility for the advancement of swimming at our university. “The university wants to become a centre of excellence for Swimming South Africa,” he said.
 

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