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NSFAS: What is NSFAS?

If you’ve been looking for funding for your studies, you may have come across the the term NSFAS. You may be wondering: what is NSFAS? Let’s take a look at what NSFAS is and what it can do for you.

NSFAS: What is NSFAS?

NSFAS, or National Student Financial Aid Scheme, was established according to the National Student Financial Aid Scheme Act of 1999 and incorporated Tertiary Education Fund of South Africa (TEFSA), which stopped operating in 2000.

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Bursaries can reduce SA’s drop-out rate

Only 26% of graduates finish their three-year degrees. This is according to the recently released and audited Vital Stats Public Higher Education 2016 report, which finds that the number of students who drop out of higher education institutions has increased to staggering proportions.

Peter Metcalfe, Group Executive for Sales and Marketing at Novus Holdings, says that one way of assisting to resolve this statistic is with bursary programmes. Providing additional personal support together with a bursary can go a long way in addressing the poor drop-out rate at higher institutions.

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What is the 'missing middle'?

In all the news surrounding tertiary education and university fees, a term that comes up often is the 'missing middle'. But what is the missing middle? Who are these people and what does it mean to be part of the missing middle?

Simply put, the missing middle are those too poor to avoid university themselves but also not poor enough to qualify for government funding. In order to qualify for NSFAS, your household income needs to be below R120 000 per year and, while this is great for the disadvantaged, the middle class is underserved by this system.

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NSFAS: Student Centered Model

You may have read recently that NSFAS would be changing the way applications worked. The organisation has adopted what they call a Student Centered Model, completely overhauling the applications system. So what does this mean for you?

NSFAS: What is the Student Centered Model?

The idea behind the Student Centered Model is that students will no longer apply for financial aid through their colleges or universities. Instead, students apply directly to NSFAS and bursaries are awarded after an evaluation of the application.

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Bursaries can lift financial burden

The National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) is the biggest government-funded entity used to administer financial aid to struggling students.

In an effort to establish equality in the education sector government has pledged to support underprivileged or disadvantaged students through various financial aid schemes.

Government also offers sector specific bursaries directly through its Departments.

Some private organisations and individuals have joined government's efforts to provide funding to students who are unable to finance their own studies.

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