Vice Chancellor's Message
On behalf of the University I would like to take this opportunity to welcome you to the University of Fort Hare (UFH) on what I am confident will be an inspiring, challenging and enjoyable journey. Established in 1916, UFH is one of Africa and South Africa‟s oldest universities, first founded as an institution of higher learning for Africans (although it is also distinguished by its original non-racial character). From humble beginnings in the early 20th century, the University of Fort Hare emerged as one of Africa‟s most distinguished and iconic Higher Education Institutions. Occupying a crucial place in the emergence and preservation of the intellectual heritage of Africa, UFH played an important role in the post-war struggle for democracy in South Africa and the continent.
It is this heritage that inspires us to ensure that UFH attracts the best students regardless of circumstance or background. It is this legacy that enables us to offer students a wide range of experiences that will enrich their learning, and options that will make their study relevant and rewarding. UFH graduates must forever be well educated to prosper in our mobile world. The University is an active participant in the lives of our communities, mandated with contributing to a sustainable future for Alice, East London, Bhisho and the wider region. Consequently, creating the right ambience on campus for a vibrant knowledge culture and intellectual system is one of our top priorities. As such, we will continuously strive to create the necessary conditions for the engagement of staff, students and the community in knowledge enhancement and scholarly activities. Therefore, the UFH community is encouraged to indulge in continuous teaching,
learning, research and broader community engagement as a way of life for all of us and this will hopefully become part of our value system and culture. With a strong knowledge tradition, the actions we take and decisions we make would be guided by in-depth knowledge and sound judgements based on clear understanding and profound wisdom.
Each year we welcome a large number of students to our campuses, many of whom move into the local community and live in residential areas. Together, we emphasisethat students should show consideration and respect for their neighbours and others in the community. Students are reminded that they live as part of a community that includes families with young children and elderly people. Our students and staff come from diverse backgrounds and cultures worldwide.
However, we share an ethos that respects openness, inclusiveness, collegiality and diversity. I am proud of our talented, motivated and energetic staff, many of
whom are leaders in their field nationally and internationally. UFH continues to implement its alumni engagement strategy to encourage development of strong, life-long connections. Our challenge is to create a value-add proposition that encourages alumni to maintain engagement, affiliation and involvement, whilst also developing a culture of philanthropy.
Congratulations to new students on your decision to study at UFH. For me, there will be no more important challenge over the next few years than to ensure that this institution offers you an exceptional university experience. We will provide you with the best possible conditions to succeed; in return you are expected to work hard, be conscientious and accept responsibility for your learning and progress. A hearty welcome to new and old staff members as well. The University will try at all times to give you the best possible support within the available resources. For all the University community; remember that the UFH rules, regulations, systems and structures are all developed to ensure your success and to assist the University with its functions. Be guided by these and show leadership towards the new members and make the University proud of your achievements.
We believe in excellence and above all, we are looking to produce tomorrow's leaders, mature well-rounded individuals who will lead, actively participate and
contribute to society. Again, welcome to the new academic year and seize the opportunities that come with being a part of the UFH community.
Dr. Mvuyo Tom
University of Fort Hare