stk162061rke“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world”

Nelson Mandela

You already know that a good education is important for your goals of having a rewarding career and a comfortable life. It’s also one of the best ways to continue bridging income gaps in South Africa. You will want to check into the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) to help fund your life goals.

NSFAS is a loan and bursary scheme funded by the Department of Higher Education and Training for those who do not have the financial means to fund their studies and / or cannot access bank funding, study loans or bursaries.

Loans will be allocated subject to the availability of education funds and are not guaranteed. That means you should hurry to apply early to make sure that you receive your share of education money and are not disappointed.

This is the mission statement of the organisation that administers NSFAS:

“To transform NSFAS into an efficient and effective provider of financial aid to students from poor and working class families in a sustainable manner that promotes access to, and success in, higher and further education and training in pursuit of South Africa’s national and human resource development goals.”

The mission statement is made up of three distinct elements which describe why NSFAS exists, what they do, and the impact on the people they serve:

  • NSFAS exists to provide financial aid to eligible students at public FET colleges and public universities.
  • NSFAS identifies eligible students, provides loans and bursaries, and collects student loan repayments to replenish the funds available for future generations of students.
  • NSFAS supports access to, and success in, higher education and training for students from poor and working class families who would otherwise not be able to afford to study.

NSFAS has very reasonable repayment terms, which are based on what you earn after you leave university. All loans that are repaid are used to fund other students who also need financial assistance.

NSFAS gives loans to students without the need for guarantees or sureties from parents or guardians.

Here are just two of the many success stories in which NSFAS played a pivotal role:

“I grew up in Soshanguve, North Pretoria where I was raised by my grandparents and single mother. I matriculated in 1998 and applied to Tshwane University of Technology to study IT. After successfully getting a loan from NSFAS, I was the top student in my first year and my loan was converted into a bursary.”        – Veronica Maloutsi

“NSFAS helped me when I was in desperate need to further my studies and achieve my dreams. Towards the end of my first year I applied to NSFAS and was granted a loan to enrol for second year. I did very well in my second year and NSFAS converted a percentage into a bursary. I got a full Government bursary to complete my Psychology studies, and enrolled for Honours in Industrial Sociology. I am now serving as an intern with the Department of Higher Education and Training in the University Support and Sector Liaison Directorate.” – Hlengiwe Constance Tshabangu

To apply for a NSFAS study loan and write your own success story,  you can apply at the institution or online directly to NSFAS.

Have questions? You can contact NSFAS on 021 763 3232.

(Information for this article courtesy of http://www.nsfas.org.za and South Africa Government Services.)