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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

Vice-Dean for Natural and Agricultural Sciences appointed at UFS
2011-03-20

Prof. Regina Cornelia (Corli) Witthuhn

The Council of the University of the Free State (UFS) has approved the appointment of Prof. Regina Cornelia (Corli) Witthuhn as Vice-Dean of the Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences at the University of the Free State (UFS). 

Prof. Witthuhn, who is currently the Vice-Dean of the Faculty of AgriSciences at Stellenbosch University, will join the UFS on 1 August 2011.
 
Her career as an academic started in 1999 when she joined Maties as a lecturer. Prior to this move, she had, amongst others, worked part-time as a science and biology teacher at the Secondary School Eunice in Bloemfontein while completing her Ph.D. in microbiology at the UFS.
 
This former Bloemfonteiner’s return is a real asset, because she has been the recipient of many prominent awards, which includes those given by the American Pathological Society (APS) for Best student oral presentation.
 
Her CV also reflects participation in scientific research projects like those performed at the Vrije Universiteit in the Netherlands and the Iowa State University in America. Besides her numerous presentations delivered on local and international level as at the IUFoST 2010, the World Congress of Food Science and Technology, hosted in Cape Town, she also hold membership of several organisations. This includes the South African Association of Food Science and Technology (SAAFoST), the South African Society for Microbiology (SASM), the South African Society for Dairy Technology (SASDT) and the Society for Applied Microbiology (SfAM).
 
Prof. Witthuhn also acted as study leader for many students doing their magister and doctoral degrees in Food Sciences.
 
 
Media Release
18 March 2011
Issued by: Lacea Loader
Director: Strategic Communication
Tel: 051 401 2584
Cell: 083 645 2454
E-mail: news@ufs.ac.za

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