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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

Graduates should use knowledge to ‘re-dream society’
2016-09-19

Description: Spring Graduation 2017 Tags: Spring Graduation 2017

Dr Molapo Qhobela, CEO of the National Research
Foundation was the guest speaker at the
2016 Spring Graduation ceremonies on the
UFS Bloemfontein Campus.
Photo: Johan Roux

“The knowledge you receive, the skills and tools you have acquired, whether they are tools of time management, tenacity or brilliance, are what we as this emerging new society need to re-dream for the type of society we would like see in this country.”

These were the inspiring words of guest speaker Dr Molapo Qhobela to graduates of the University of the Free State (UFS) at the Spring Graduation ceremonies on 15 September 2016 in the Callie Human Centre on the Bloemfontein Campus. Dr Qhobela is the Chief Executive Officer of the National Research Foundation.

A total of 442 degrees, diplomas and certificates were conferred on graduates from six UFS faculties, namely the Faculties of Law, Humanities, Education, Health Sciences, Economic and Management Sciences and Natural and Agricultural Sciences.

Joyous atmosphere befitting a spring ceremony

The spirit at the spring ceremonies was truly inspiring, joyous and heart-warming. The jubilation from the audience as the procession entered the hall demonstrated the exhilaration of graduates and their families. The sense of accomplishment and pride reverberated as the graduates walked across the stage.

Graduates’ hard work and dedication applauded

 “You endured what you had to
endure and you enjoyed what
had to be enjoyed.”

“You have worked incredibly hard and the privilege to walk across the red carpet only goes to those who were prepared to do the work,” Dr Khotso Mokhele, Chancellor of the UFS said.

He applauded graduates for the many hours and sacrifices they had to endure, saying: “You endured what you had to endure and you enjoyed what had to be enjoyed.” Dr Mokhele also mentioned the amazing Gold medal win at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro of UFS star athlete, Wayde van Niekerk.

Distinctions awarded by the UFS.

 

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