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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

Education bursaries awarded to 180 UFS students
2007-08-24

 

At the awarding ceremony were, from the left: Prof. Steve Niemann (Head: School of Education at the UFS), Kaizer Mosupeng (first-year student in Education), Prof. Frederick Fourie (Rector and Vice-Chancellor of the UFS), Mr Enver Surty (Deputy Minister of Education), Danielle Nel (third-year Education student) and Mr Tebogo Lioma (Deputy Director General of the Free State Department of Education).
Photo: Leonie Bolleurs

Education bursaries awarded to 180 UFS students

The Department of Education awarded 180 Fundza Lushaka Bursaries to students in education at the University of the Free State (UFS).

The bursaries were handed to the students today by the Deputy Minister of Education, Mr Enver Surty during a function held on the Main Campus in Bloemfontein.

The Fundza Lushaka Bursary Programme is a multi-year programme that promotes teaching in public schools. The bursaries, valued at R40 000 each, enable students to complete a full teaching qualification in an area of national priority. The recipients are required to teach at a school or provincial education department for the same number of years that they receive the bursary.

“The programme was implemented in recognition and acknowledgement of the educators in South Africa. All of you sitting here today should regard yourselves as nation builders as you will be helping to build communities and a caring society. Therefore it is imperative that you must be committed to teaching and have an interest in working with young people when taking up this bursary,” said Mr Surty.

Mr Surty said the skills required for teachers of today are much different than in the past. “You would be teaching in an environment with mixed cultures and language and must be able to adapt and be willing to contribute to a multi-cultural, multi-lingual and diverse South African society,” said Mr Surty.

According to Mr Surty, the national priority areas include among others African languages, English, Mathematics, Natural Sciences and Information and Computer Application Technology. Although the bursary programme is non-racial, special attention was given to the awarding of the bursaries to women. At the UFS 58% of the bursars are female students, while 58% are black and 42% white students.

Prof. Frederick Fourie, Rector and Vice-Chancellor of the UFS, said the institution was worried about the small number of students who showed interest in the field of education a while ago. “Since the implementation of the bursary programme we have seen a turn-around in the registration of students in education, which is an extremely positive sign,” said Prof. Fourie.

Media Release
Issued by: Lacea Loader
Assistant Director: Media Liaison
Tel: 051 401 2584
Cell: 083 645 2454
E-mail: loaderl.stg@ufs.ac.za
24 August 2007
 

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