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Ms Oprah Winfrey receives an honorary doctorate from the UFS
2011-06-24

 

Dr Oprah Winfrey after receiving her honorary doctorate degree.
Photo: Rian Horn 

Our university awarded an honorary doctorate in Education to global media leader and philanthropist Ms Oprah Winfrey on Friday 24 June 2011.

The honorary doctorate is in recognition of Ms Winfrey’s unparalleled dedication to improving the lives and futures of so many by improving education and ensuring that it is accessible to all. Through her award-winning show, The Oprah Winfrey Show (which concluded this year after 25 years of entertainment and service) and the various charity organisations she has established, Ms Winfrey harnessed the power of her iconic stature in the struggle to eradicate poverty and make education accessible to all.

The Callie Human Centre on our Bloemfontein Campus, where the award ceremony took place, was packed with an excited audience consisting of students, staff, members of the public and special guests. After receiving her honorary doctorate, Ms Winfrey addressed the audience and gave students the opportunity to ask her questions. During the ceremony, entertainment was provided by acclaimed musicians such as the internationally lauded award-winning singer Sibongile Khumalo, the Botshabelo String Orchestra, the Bloemfontein Children’s Choir and the choir of the Bartimea School for the Deaf and Blind.

Tickets for this event – attended by 4 500 people – were sold out within hours, confirming the respect and support South Africans have for Ms Winfrey’s work in Africa and internationally. While at our university, Ms Winfrey also visited our International Institution for Studies in Race, Reconciliation and Social Justice. The awarding of Ms Winfrey's well-deserved honorary doctorate is another milestone in our university's proud history.

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