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03 May 2019 | Story Ruan Bruwer
Lynique Beneke
Lynique Beneke, long jump athlete of the University of the Free State and the national women’s champion seven times in a row, hopes to qualify for the World Championships.

The long jumper, Lynique Beneke, dreams of going to another Olympic Games and jumping over seven metres before she retires.

In between, there is still a World Championship later in the year for which she is trying to qualify. The qualifying standard is 6,72 m, not far from the 6,64 m she achieved at the national athletics championships at the end of April, which earned her a seventh consecutive national crown. At the time, it was the seventh best globally. She will have to qualify in Europe, as the South African season is over.

“With my faith as my biggest support, my mom and I both dreamed about me jumping exactly the same distance of 7,03 m! That is my big goal. I know I can do that,” Beneke (28) said. Her personal best is 6,81 m.

Special bond with coach


She is currently studying Education (BEd Senior and FET phase). “At this moment, I’m focusing on finishing my degree and enjoying my athletics. I want to give my athletics a fair chance, as I am only getting into prime shape now at this age. Once I’m done with athletics, I will focus on a career.”

According to Beneke, a 2016 Olympian and the Kovsie Senior Sportswoman of the Year for 2018, consistency is the name of her game. “I show up, even when I don’t feel like it. I push myself every day. I feel I have so much left in the tank, and that motivates me. All the glory to God.”

She is married to the hurdler, PC (also a Kovsie student). They moved from Gauteng to Bloemfontein at the end of 2017.

“My coach, Emmarie Fouché, was the big influence (coming here). I started working with her at the end of 2015. We work perfectly together; we are both women and have the same work ethic. She understands me. We are very close, and I think that is what makes the difference.”


News Archive

Vice-Chancellor honoured with major awards
2013-05-02

02 May 2013

The University of the Free State (UFS) is proud to announce that Prof Jonathan Jansen, Vice-Chancellor and Rector, has been awarded a number of major awards recently.

The University of California in the United States awarded him the Alice and Clifford Spendlove Prize in Social Justice, Diplomacy and Tolerance. The award is made in recognition of persons who exemplify in their work the delivery of social justice, diplomacy and tolerance in the diverse local and global society.

“The committee was very impressed with the commitment that Prof Jansen has had to reconciliation and forgiveness as a way to build bridges and to find common ground. Prof Jansen is following in the steps of many of our greatest peace-time leaders and we support his efforts to bring understanding to all cultures,” said Mark Aldenderfer, chair of the awards committee and Dean of the School of Social Sciences, Humanities and Art at the University of California.

Prof Jansen also received the 2013 Academia Award at the Sixth Annual Ubuntu Lecture and Dialogue Awards Ceremony of the Turquoise Harmony Institute on 4 April 2013 in Johannesburg. The Institute aims to foster relations among different faith and cultural traditions to contribute to the well-being of humanity.

According to the organisers, “outstanding individuals who made noteworthy contributions to dialogue, peace and harmony in the society,” are given recognition during the ceremony. The awards are made in a number of different categories. Prof Jansen was among the recipients who included Graca Machel and the South African National Editors Forum (SANEF). Previous winners of Turquoise Awards include Ahmed Kathrada, Chester Williams, Dr Frene Ginwala and Prof Russel Botman.

On 10 May 2013, Prof Jansen was also honoured by Kappa Delta Pi International Honour Society in Education. He was awarded membership of the Laureate Chapter of the society founded in 1911 which “is comprised of men and women who have made distinguished contributions to education, and is limited to 60 living persons”. Prof Jansen joins an exclusive membership of 293 which includes such luminaries as Albert Einstein, Eleanor Roosevelt, Jean Piaget and George Washington Carver.

Also in the United States, Prof Jansen has been invited to be Messenger Lecturer for Fall 2013 at Cornell University. He will give three lectures and interact with the students and staff of Cornell at various functions.

“This is a significant honour and it will really allow members from across the university to get a deeper appreciation of the work you are doing at UFS and in South Africa more broadly,” said Prof Judith Byfield of Cornell’s Department of History and Director of Graduate Studies at the department’s Africana Studies and Research Centre.

On the local front, City Press published its inaugural 100 World Class South Africans on 28 April 2013. During a rigorous selection process, 100 of our country’s most extraordinary citizens who have achieved world-class status were chosen. Prof Jansen’s achievements procured him a place on this prestigious list in the category: Heroes and Mavericks.

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