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12 September 2019 | Story Valentino Ndaba | Photo Charl Devenish
Arbor tree plant
To celebrate National Arbor Week the University of the Free State has embarked on a drive to plant 150 trees during the month of September

If you’ve wondered whether Arbor Month was important, you only have to look at the destruction and long-term damage that deforestation causes to the environment and the world’s inhabitants. To observe National Arbor Month, the University of the Free State’s has (UFS) kick-started a drive to plant 150 trees during the month of September.

To launch this initiative, the Rector and Vice-Chancellor, Prof Francis Petersen, alongside members of the rectorate, assisted the University Estates team in planting the first 10 of 100 trees at the Bloemfontein Campus on Wednesday 4 September 2019. A total of 50 trees will be planted on the Qwaqwa Campus.

Towards a sustainable future

“We have gone through periods of drought in the Free State that have severely impacted not only the plants but the trees on our campuses. The idea is to emphasise sustainability, and as a university, we believe that sustainability is important. As an education institution, we have to look at the generations that are still to come to our campuses,” said Prof Petersen.

He urged the Kovsie community to ensure that all practices across the campuses are linked to global standards of sustainability. “As we develop over the next couple of months and years, we will get much closer alignment between what we are doing as a university and the Sustainable Development Goals.

Drought-resistant man-made forests

Clusters of mini forests across the campuses will be created with a variety of trees including the karee, white karee, white stinkwood, and wild olive. These indigenous trees can adapt well to different soils including those that are poorly drained.

Celebrating Arbor Week

This year’s campaign was held under the theme Forests and Sustainable Cities. As part of the celebration, University Estates made a commitment to the environment by embarking on the green initiative which includes other project such as the upgrade of Red Square on the Bloemfontein Campus.

News Archive

UFS to host second Global Leadership Summit
2015-07-02

 

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The Global Leadership Summit (GLS) will be held at the University of the Free State’s (UFS) Bloemfontein and Qwaqwa Campuses between 5 July and 17 July 2015.

More than 103 international delegates from various universities in Asia, the United States, and Europe, as well as 40 student delegates from the University of the Free State, are expected to attend.

Keynote speakers will include local and international academics, thought leaders, and local celebrities, such as Prof Pumla Gobodo-Madikizela, Zelda le Grange and Donna Walker-Kuhne.  This is the second time that the UFS hosts the GLS. The first time was in July 2012, when it was a great success and was attended by about 160 international and local delegates. 

This year, panel discussions and workshops will focus on gender issues, citizenship and leadership, race relations and interfaith leadership. The summit will strengthen formal and informal international academic partnerships, sharing the emerging UFS international network with its partner organisations, while expanding opportunities for new cooperative initiatives, and enhancing international exposure of UFS staff and students by creating opportunities for vibrant intercultural interaction and exchange on campus. 

New possibilities for participation in international research partnerships in diverse research areas will be explored, as well as issues relating to diversity and transformation and the exchange of ideas and international experiences that contribute to the rethinking of curricula and educational approaches in Higher Education.

As part of the programme, delegates will visit the Qwaqwa Campus on 10 July 2015, where they will interact with the leadership of the campus, its staff and students and enjoy the arts and cultural experience of the Eastern Free State.  The summit will end with a visit to various sites in Bloemfontein, where delegates will engage in community-based outreach activities in disadvantaged communities around the city.

More about the Global Leadership Summit

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