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11 May 2022 | Story Anthony Mthembu | Photo Edmund de Wet
House Ardour
Students of House Ardour along with other dignitaries cut the ribbon as they launch their new name.

The Health Sciences residence on the Bloemfontein Campus of the University of the Free State (UFS), commonly referred to as SHU 8, has been renamed House Ardour. The official launch of the residence name took place on Saturday, 7 May 2022 in the Callie Human Centre on the Bloemfontein Campus. “This is really a historic moment for us in Residence Affairs, Student Affairs, and I think for the university at large,” expressed the Assistant Director of Student Life at the UFS, Pulane Malefane. The launch takes place after two years of planning and discussions about an appropriate name for the residence. As such, the launch was well attended by some of the students living in the newly renamed residence, along with other dignitaries such as Prof Colin Chasi, Director of the Unit for Institutional Change and Social Justice, Quintin Koetaan, Senior Director of Housing and Residence Affairs, Prof Mpho Jama, Associate Professor in the Office of the Dean: Faculty of Health Sciences, and Nthabiseng Mokhethi who serves as Ardour’s Residence Head, among others.

Embracing a New Name

The name Ardour means to love, and to do something with great passion and enthusiasm. Malefane says the name is symbolic of the fact that many of the students in this residence will go out into the world and delineate those very values through their servitude. There has been a deep yearning from the student body for the renaming of the Health Sciences residence for quite some time. As such, the launch and celebration of this name is acknowledging the residence as part of the UFS community. “Names are important, names can carry deep personal, cultural, and historical connections, it also gives us a sense of who we are, the communities we belong to, and our places in the world,” Malefane highlighted during her speech in the Callie Human Centre.

The Importance of the Residence

Although this co-ed residence is not restricted to students within the Faculty of Health Sciences, the residence is a response to some of the problems that students in the faculty have been facing. “During recess when all the other students have to go home, some of our students still need to remain on campus or even come back earlier. This has created the need to say that we cannot allow our students to move between residences when they have such an academic workload that requires them to be in a space in which they don’t have to worry about where they are going to stay,” indicated Prof Jama. As such, the residence is also an essential way of ensuring that students from the Faculty of Health Sciences focus on developing academically as well as socially in the university space, without worrying about accommodation. 

Subsequent to a few remarks from the dignitaries at the Callie Human Centre, some of the guests descended to Ardour for the cutting of the ribbon. The ribbon was cut by Emily Chikobvu who serves as Ardour’s Prime, along with Quintin Koetaan, and Nthabiseng Mokhethi. “Moving forward, we do not want to hear the name Shoe 8 – that name is in the past – from now on we shall be referred to as House Ardour,” stated Vusimuzi Gqalane, Senior Assistant in the Unit for Institutional Change and Social Justice.

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