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Which is better a bursary or a student loan?


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Do you know the difference between a bursary and a student loan?

A bursary may seem like the first choice for cash strapped students but it may not always be the easiest to obtain and students need to consider all their options.

Who would benefit from a bursary or a loan?

Bursaries are generally aimed at underprivileged students and high achievers. They are designed to offer financial support to individuals who want to study full-time.

On the other hand student loans are aimed at part-time or working students who are looking to supplement their income in order to cover their college expenses.

How do applications differ?

Both bursaries and student loans will have a set of requirements that applicants must meet in order to qualify for financial aid. However these requirements may differ slightly.

Where bursary administrators may look at the student's academic performance, financial institutions are more likely to request employee payslips or bank statements.

Sponsors and government agencies often receive thousands of applications from students who are forced to compete for the limited resources available. Whereas banks or private institutions are not limited in their capacity to provide financial assistance.

What are the conditions?

Again, both options will have conditions attached to the contracts.

For example students who receive bursaries may be expected to achieve a certain academic result for the duration of their course. Or they may be required to work for the sponsor after they have completed their studies.

The conditions of a student loan are largely linked to repayment options. Students will have to agree to the terms of their repayment plan before they can access the money.

There are obligations attached to financial contracts and students need to understand the agreements they are entering into before they sign on the dotted line.

By Cindy Payle - Portal Publishing

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Latest Bursaries

Flywire aims to award a total of seven scholarships of $5,000 USD each. These scholarships will be awarded across different themes. 

These are the themes:

  1. Social justice
  2. Global citizenship
  3. Global health

Closing date: 21 June 2021

Sanlam is offering bursaries to scholars who have enrolled to study actuarial science.

If you are a whiz at maths, enjoy a good challenge by solving difficult problems and are willing to remain focused and disciplined through years of studying and training, then you are just who Sanlam is looking for.

Closing Date: 31 July 2021

Jakes Gerwel Fellowship is a full university scholarship that provides extensive mentoring and leadership development for graduate students with a passion for teaching and education.

The Old Mutual Education Trust (OMET) applications are open to all participating union members and their dependents. The funding from this scholarship will allow for the pursuit of any tertiary qualification at one of South Africa’s public higher education institutions.

The Oppenheimer Memorial Trust (OMT) awards a limited number of scholarships annually. These scholarships are for postgraduate study at public Higher Education Institutions in South Africa at Master’s, Doctoral and Postdoctoral level.

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