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VARSITIES FULL. WHAT NOW?

With most South Africa university applications closed for the new year, hopeful academics will now await the verdict to hear whether their applications to study in 2011 were successful or not. Many universities received an influx of applications, thousands of which may have to be turned down due to the limited space within the institutions. Where does this leave young people hoping to further their education next year?

For the large number who will not be accepted for study at a South African university in 2011, tertiary education does not have to be completely ruled out. In fact, 50 Further Education and Training Colleges (FETs) in South Africa are still open for applications. The Department of Education FET College Bursary Programme also makes it possible for needy applicants to realise their dreams of a “vocational” qualification, which will get the youth off to a flying start on a career path and access into higher education level studies, should they want to study further at a later stage.

FET college programmes are important to develop the skills base in South African workforce and students may gain the National Certificate (Vocational) in areas of marketing, finance, management, education, agriculture, engineering, tourism and many more hands-on industries.

South Africa currently lags behind when it comes to the enormous numbers of students in first world nations who are enrolled for study in the technical, vocational sector. The Department of Higher Education and Training is thus encouraging applications to FET Colleges through its bursary programme, with funds that have been set aside for South African applicats who meet the bursary criteria. For those eligible students, all or some of their tuition costs, accommodation, books and registration fees may be covered for 2011 – but not every application will qualify. This could be the answer for many needy students looking for an education as it will provide them  with preparation skills for the workplace as soon as they complete the three-year programme.

Applications to study at an FET College in South Africa are currently open. Submit your applications before end of the 2010 academic year.

Article by NSFAS (National Student Financial Aid Scheme)

Contact NSFAS for more information about financial aid opportunities. Sms 32261, email info@nsfas.org.za or call 021 763 3232.



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