Vodacom bursaries in South Africa are offered by the namesake of the program, Vodacom. The company operates across Africa but has its largest consumer base in South Africa where most of its bursaries are awarded. As a communications company providing mobile phone service to its customers Vodacom will be looking for students that fall into categories which will assist in its primary business. This bursary at Vodacom represents one of many privately offered bursary programs in South Africa and will be hotly sought after by students looking for financial aid. Ultimately this means that competition for the bursary’s awards is going to be very high, so any student interested in applying for a Vodacom bursary this year or in the coming years will want to represent themselves in the best possible light.
Unlike many bursaries offered in South Africa, students who received a Vodacom bursary award are not always required to work for the company after graduation. However awardees are able to participate in summer work programs which will help build relevant resume applicable material for future employment options and open up the possibility of working with the Vodacom graduate program for those interested in education beyond a bachelor degree.
As with all such programs, the most important thing to get out of the way is whether or not a student is eligible for a Vodacom bursary. First students should understand that this program is restricted only to those interested in particular fields. These fields include engineering or information technology. Specifically Vodacom bursaries are normally awarded to those entering the field of electrical engineering or seeking degrees in computer science, computer engineering, information systems or programs along similar lines.
If a student is interested in those fields, they must next be able to pass the basic eligibility requirements. Students must be South African citizens and be taking or planning to take courses at a South African institution. They must also be able to show a financial need by coming from a family which makes less than R150 000 a year while also having graduated from grade 12. In passing their matriculation exams, students cannot have received anything less than a C in mathematics and science. Finally, all applicants must be under 25 years of age. Any student who may be interested in a Vodacom bursary and meets these requirements should sincerely consider applying for the program.
Vodacom bursary awards vary depending on the nature of the applicant. The final amount given to a student is based on financial need first and then merit with regards to how well they have performed in academics previously. Out of the many applications Vodacom receives every year, only fifty are awarded and since 1999 1,000 awards have been given out. Though a limited number are given out, every bursary from Vodacom is renewable in the following year and students are encouraged to remain enrolled in the program.
The Vodacom bursaries in South Africa, while offered through the Vodacom Foundation, is not directly managed by the group but instead is handled by a company called Career Wise. All application material is sent directly to this group who will then weed out those who are ineligible and contact those are left for initial interviews. Applications for the Vodacom bursary are available online during August until the end of the month, so students should be sure to have all relevant material handed in as soon as they can.
It is always important to keep options open when applying to bursary programs, and while the Vodacom bursary program will be attractive to many students it should not represent the end of their search. With only fifty awards given out every year, students should continue to their search for potential sources of financial aid. A quick search of internet will turn up a number of possible programs available for students entering computer science or electrical engineering, skill sets which are relatively rare in the country. If awarded you are awarded one of the Vodacom bursaries, be sure to take full advantage of the summer work programs and, if planning to get more than a bachelor degree, consider their graduate program as well.