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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

Top ‘political analyst’ for Spring graduation
2013-09-15

Graduands and parents can prepare themselves for an exciting Spring graduation, with a top ‘political analyst’ and a young woman who sees and sings with her soul, as guest speakers.

Chester Missing, South Africa’s top puppet political commentator, and Shenley Pretorius, a blind singer, will address the more or less 650 graduands on Thursday 19 September 2013. 

A total of 544 bachelors and honours degrees, as well as 106 diplomas and certificates, will be awarded during the graduation ceremony in the Callie Human Centre at the Bloemfontein Campus. The qualifications will be awarded at two ceremonies.

Chester Missing, a presenter on the television programme, Late Nite News with Loyiso Gola, will be 'accompanied' by Conrad Koch, one of South Africa’s most in demand comedy talents.

The 15-year-old Shenley touched people’s hearts nationwide when she appeared on Noot vir Noot, the SABC2 music programme, earlier this year. The teenager is a Grade 9 learner at Prinshof School for the Visually Impaired in Pretoria.

The programme for the different ceremonies is as follows:

  • 09:30 The Faculty of the Humanities awards 160 qualifications, The Faculty of Education 71 qualifications, the Faculty of Law 27 qualifications and the Faculty of Theology 2 qualifications.
  • 14:30 The Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences awards 137 qualifications, the Faculty of Health Sciences 98 qualifications and the Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences 155 qualifications.

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