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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

UFS joined EduRoam project
2011-03-13

Photo: Gerda-Marié Viviers

The ICT Services of the UFS presented the recent conference of the Association of South African University Directors of Information Technology (ASAUDIT) on home turf. Here from the left are: Prof. Janse Tolmie, senior director of the UFS’s ICT Services, Mr Sakkie Janse van Rensburg, executive director of the University of Cape Town’s ICT services, Mr Louis Marais, deputy director of the UFS’s ICT services and Mr Christiaan Kühn of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).

Travelling academics should soon gain access to free internet more easily. This is after three South African universities, of which the University of the Free State (UFS) is one, joined the EduRoam project. Several academics were briefed on this concept at the last conference of ASAUDIT (Association of South African University Directors of Information Technology) which was held in the CR Swart Auditorium on the Main Campus of the UFS. EduRoam, which is available worldwide at participating universities and airports, enables users to gain access to the internet via their home universities. Prof. Janse Tolmie, senior director of the UFS’s ICT services explains that, should a colleague sign in at an “EduRoam university” the staff member’s information would be verified at the UFS’s IT systems in order to determine the legitimacy of the EduRoam user. After this internet access would be granted. The UFS, University of Cape Town and Rhodes University are the first three universities that have taken on the EduRoam project. The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) also plays a central role in the project in South Africa. More information regarding the UFS’s utilisation of EduRoam will soon be announced.

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