Botho University (BU) Manzini Campus in Eswatini recently awarded scholarship to 30 first year students who enrolled in the 2020/21 intake. These scholarships are offered to first year students yearly by the university (BU) to promote cost-sharing; and to ease and increase access to entry into higher learning. In the year 2019 BU awarded scholarships to 34 students, who are now in the second year of their studies.
BU scholarship is offered to first year students for the entire duration of their respective programs and beneficiaries are not expected to pay back any amount. This scholarship cover the students’ tuition fees and examinations. The awards are categorized into three (3) tiers:
- 100% – All tuition fees are covered and students are not expected to pay any tuition fee.
- 75% – Only 25% of tuition fees to be paid by students and the rest is covered by scholarship.
- 50% – Students are expected to pay half of the tuition fees whilst the other half is covered by scholarship.
In an interview with Thembelihle Dlamini, a beneficiary under the 75% category expressed his excitement about being awarded a scholarship. “I am more than excited to be part of Botho University under the 75% category, without the scholarship I would have not been able to afford tuition. It goes without saying Eswatini still lacks in issues of ICT and this program will go a long way in equipping us with knowledge that we will later apply in the industry,” he said.
The news of scholarship awards was well received with excitement by both parents and the students as well. According to Welcome Sibandze, a student from Sihlutse in the Shiselweni Region, BU is a miracle worker after granting him a 100 % scholarship. “This is like a dream come true for me as I had no one to pay for my fees and getting this scholarship for the whole duration of my studies is a miracle. This will help me achieve my academic goals and help improve my livelihood,” he said.
Having been granted a 50 % scholarship, a parent Phumzile Mndzebele expressed how even if she had doubts about the university’s operations as a new entrant in the higher education space locally, her faith in Botho University was revived. In addition the parent also mentioned that without scholarship there were very few chances of her child accessing tertiary education. “My finances are very stretched and even when I would apply for loans they would not be able to sustain my child’s education,” she said.
BU continues to empower communities with such initiatives which will contribute to the growth and building of a great nation.