Media statement by Nomonde Mbadi, Executive Director of Corporate Affairs
Durban University of Technology (DUT) has established a special bursary fund to cater for those students that fall outside the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) but are showing successful progress in their studies. The bursary fund has been created to afford students an opportunity to complete their studies, when, due to a variety of unforeseen circumstances, they are unable to finance their studies themselves.
A Committee to drive the student bursary fund was formed after an observation during student protest that there was a serious issue around finances. It took the committee a year of brainstorming and deliberating about starting a bursary fund to assist students. The student bursary fund was launched in March. The Student Bursary Fund Committee is composed of Gops Chetty, Nomonde Mbadi, Melani Lourens, Viv Moodley and Mandla Shange. Nelani Govender is the new member. The Committee is open to all who feel they may want to participate and play a meaningful role in it.
“This is not a general bursary but it caters for academically successful students with special cases which may have arisen because of dire family financial constraints or any difficulties. It is an opportunity to help a student who succeeds not to leave the University without having completed their qualification due to unforeseen problems. We are not trying to mirror normal bursary but we want to bridge the gap for those students with special problems. We step in to help where NSFAS cannot because the student does not meet the stipulated requirements,” says Mr Gops Chetty, Student Bursary Fund Committee member and Executive Assistant to the Vice Chancellor.
The student bursary fund was well received by business partners at the launch and DUT made contacts who expressed interest in supporting the fund. Companies responded positively by pledging to contribute to the fund. The Committee is going on an extensive drive to ensure that the fund grows. The Committee will be visiting companies to strengthen its relationship with them.
Once the rules of the fund are finalized students will be invited to apply for the bursary fund. Staff are encouraged to support the fund and to consult Nelani Govender or Gops Chetty to facilitate that. An appeal is made to staff who may know someone that may be willing to assist in supporting such a fund.
For more information contact Bhekani Dlamini on 031 373 2845 to facilitate the interview .