Mpumalanga, Monday 17 September 2018: With less than a month to go before South African matrics start their high school final exams, 200 Mpumalanga matrics are looking ahead to 2019 in preparation for what the world of tertiary education will hold for them. It is all thanks to a special five day ‘university expectations’ camp put together by the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA).
In July, 800 matric learners descended on Emakhazeni Boarding School in Machadodorp to improve their academic performance and to gain invaluable life skills training and career information to help them make wise and appropriate career choices. Now, the top 200 learners are back for more.
The “Mpumalanga Matric Excellence Camp,” which takes place between 30 September and 5 October, will give the province’s cream of the crop an extra boost in academic support while providing learners with insight and practical skills they can apply to their first year at university.
This, explains SAICA Project Manager, Godfrey Legwale, is essential as, with only one university in the province, learners who have the academic aptitude to go to university face additional challenges as most will have to leave home to go study in new city.
‘Besides making the tough decision about which university and which programme is best for you, learners who choose to study outside of the province also have to figure out how to manage their finances, navigate new social situations, develop their self-confidence, continue to get good grades and much more, all without the support system they have in their own hometown. This, can prove tough for new students and is one of the things we are looking to assist the 200 learners attending our upcoming camp with,’ explains Legwale.
“Since more than 40% of first-year students drop out of university in their first year of study, it is our hope that by helping them be better prepared for what awaits them at university we can help these students overcome many of the structural stumbling blocks that are in the way of their success.’
Editor’s note: How were learners chosen? In accordance with SAICA’s mandate to transform the demographics of the chartered accountancy profession to reflect the demographics of the country, SAICA works with the provincial departments of education to select learners from disadvantaged areas to attend the SAICA Development Camps. Learners are selected based on academic performance: they must have scored a minimum of 60% in mathematics and English. These learners receive assistance intended to help them produce high quality matric passes and set them on the path to study towards key professions of high demand. This year, 800 Mpumalanga matrics were given the opportunity to attend these camps which ran in July.
The learners attending the upcoming Mpumalanga Matric Excellence Camp represent the top 200 learners who attended the July camp after they proved they have what it takes to achieve a level 6 or 7 pass in their matric final exams and be accepted to university.
About SAICA SAICA, South Africa’s pre-eminent accountancy body, is widely recognised as one of the world’s leading accounting institutes. The Institute provides a wide range of support services to more than 46 000 members and associates who are chartered accountants [CAs(SA)], as well as associate general accountants (AGAs(SA)) and accounting technicians (ATs(SA)), who hold positions as CEOs, MDs, board directors, business owners, chief financial officers, auditors and leaders in every sphere of commerce and industry, and who play a significant role in the nation’s highly dynamic business sector and economic development.
About the Thuthuka Bursary Fund and Education Upliftment Project: One of SAICA’s prime goals is to contribute towards strengthening the country’s economy by playing a significant and leading role in transformation and skills development. The Thuthuka Education Upliftment Project, a pioneering initiative to promote transformation in the profession, was launched in the Eastern Cape in 2002 and has grown into a national project.
Thuthuka’s objective is to transform the demographics of the profession to reflect those of the country in terms of race and gender, and provide educational support to African learners and students for the benefit of the profession, while simultaneously helping to uplift communities. Therefore, SAICA prides itself in leading the chartered accountancy profession as a socially responsible driver of business and skills development by supporting and encouraging enterprise development initiatives.
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