The University of the Free State (UFS) will be presenting its biggest virtual graduation ceremony so far when students who have completed their qualifications at the end of 2020, will graduate from 19 to 22 April 2021.
Part of the week’s graduation proceedings will be the conferral of three honorary doctorates upon Dr Rudolf Johannes (Dolf) van Niekerk, award-winning South African short-story writer, novelist, and poet who will be receiving a DLitt (h.c.) on 19 April 2021; retired Justice of the Constitutional Court of South Africa, Justice Zakeria Mohammed (Zak) Yacoob will be receiving a LLD (h.c.) on 22 April 2021; and renowned business leader, founder, and chairperson of the private investment firms, Izingwe Capital and Izingwe Holdings, Dr Sipho Mila Pityana, who will receive a DPhil (h.c.).
“This is our fourth virtual graduation ceremony, and we remain humbled and inspired by your grit and courage to push forward in this new, extraordinary world. Although you may have felt uncertain about the future at times, you refused to give up – and instead, you boldly crafted your own destiny,” says Prof Francis Petersen, Rector and Vice-Chancellor of the University of the Free State.
Prof Petersen further says that he is looking forward to seeing the graduates grow into the leaders of tomorrow. “I know the world will be a better place with your input and contribution. Over the past year, each of us had many similar, and also many unique challenges. But today we unite in celebrating each and every one of you – we only see winners.”
“I admire your resilience – we can all learn a lot from you. It would have been easy to quit, but you chose not to. We are extremely proud of you,” says Prof Petersen.
Just over 7 900 qualifications will be awarded to students across all campuses, including 251 master’s degrees and 43 doctoral degrees. Apart from this, diplomas, bachelor’s degrees, honours degrees, and postgraduate diplomas will also be awarded in all faculties. The recordings will be broadcast daily at 10:00 and can be viewed at https://www.ufs.ac.za/virtual-events/2021-april-virtual-graduation
For a breakdown of the number of qualifications to be awarded per faculty on each day, see information on the UFS graduation webpage.