A night of warmth and connection – Soup and Sherry Evening for Central University of Technology, Free State Alumni

CUT News Alumni
A night of warmth and connection – Soup and Sherry Evening for Central University of Technology, Free State Alumni

Alumni attending the CUT Soup and Sherry Evening

On the crisp evening of 6 June 2024, the esteemed Central University of Technology, Free State (CUT) Hotel School was aglow with a warm, inviting ambience as the Alumni Affairs Office hosted a unique Soup and Sherry Evening. This delightful gathering, with its distinctive theme, was more than just an opportunity to indulge in delicious cuisine; it was a heartfelt celebration of the CUT community aimed at fostering connections, reminiscing about shared experiences, and fortifying the bonds that tie alumni to their alma mater.

At the Hotel School, a diverse group of alumni gathered, each sharing their unique journey since leaving the university. The atmosphere was alive with animated conversations, laughter, and the clinking of glasses filled with sherry wine—a testament to the evening’s unique theme. This event was a true melting pot, reflecting the rich diversity of the CUT alumni network, and reinforcing the sense of belonging and pride in our community.

The purpose of this evening extended beyond socialising and savouring a hearty meal. It served as a vital platform to underscore the significance of the Alumni Association Executive, who were actively involved in the event, and its role in bridging the gap between the university and its graduates. The association’s executive members were present, mingling with attendees and sharing insights about their pivotal work to uphold the university’s legacy and support current students. 

Guest speaker and alumnus Dr Lehlohonolo Motake uttered an inspirational speech.  “We are forever connected by the indelible mark CUT has left on us. Let us leverage this powerful bond, embrace strong leadership, and work together to elevate the CUT brand to even greater heights. Let us build a stable and focused alumni network that becomes a driving force for positive change. Today's world vastly differs from the one we entered CUT 20 years ago. We face economic uncertainties, technological disruptions, and a global landscape that seems to shift daily. But here is the thing: we are CUT graduates! We are equipped with the knowledge, the adaptability, and the unwavering determination to not only navigate these challenges but to thrive in them,” he said.

One of the evening’s highlights was a stirring address by the Interim President of the Alumni Association. “We are the brand ambassadors of our alma mater,” he proclaimed, his voice resonating with pride and conviction. “We should always touch base and stay informed about what is happening at CUT. Our connection to the university doesn’t end at graduation; it evolves and strengthens as we grow personally and professionally.”

His words struck a chord with many, especially when he touched upon the challenges faced by the association. “One of our ongoing challenges is the issuance of certificates,” he explained, emphasising the hurdles and financial constraints that some graduates encounter. “We come from different backgrounds, and not everyone can always afford tuition fees. This is where the power of our community comes into play.”

With a heartfelt plea, he urged his fellow alumni to contribute to the Alumni Bursary Fund, emphasizing the significant impact even a small donation can make in a student's life. “I urge you to give towards this fund to help a student in need. No matter how small, every contribution can make a significant difference in someone’s life. It’s our chance to give back and ensure that the doors of education remain open for all.”

The evening, they progressed with a delectable array of soups that warmed the soul and a selection of sherry-infused delicacies that delighted the palate. Conversations flowed seamlessly, with alumni sharing fond memories of their time at CUT, exchanging professional insights, and discussing ways to contribute to the university’s future.

A prize draw, eagerly anticipated by all attendees, added a touch of excitement to the evening. The room buzzed with anticipation as the names were called out, and five lucky alumni walked away with wonderful prizes, further adding to the joyous spirit of the event.

As the event drew close, the air was filled with a renewed sense of purpose and unity. The Soup and Sherry Evening had brought together a diverse group of individuals and ignited a collective spirit of giving and support. Alumni departed with their hearts full, reminding them that their connection to CUT is a lifelong bond that they are proud to uphold and nurture.

Uploaded: 27 June 2024
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