‘Almost 400 000 study opportunities for class of 2013’

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SAPA

Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande. Picture: Werner Beukes/SAPA

Cape Town -

Close to 400 000 study opportunities are available to 2013 matriculants at tertiary education institutions, Higher Education and Training Minister Blade Nzimande said on Thursday.

Nzimande congratulated the class of 2013 for the highest matric pass rate since 1994.

“As the department, we are aware that this is a very important milestone in the lives of young people and therefore would like to take this opportunity to make them aware of approximately 396 449 opportunities available to them within the... 25 universities, 50 further education and training (FET) colleges, and 21 sector education and training authorities (Setas),” Nzimande said.

Further study opportunities available at the country's higher education institutions included:

- 197 946 new entrant opportunities at universities;

- 23 000 engineering and business studies opportunities at FET colleges;

- 44 000 national certificate vocational programme opportunities at FET colleges;

- 10 000 artisanal opportunities at FET colleges; and

- 93 000 occupationally-directed (apprenticeship or learnership) opportunities in collaboration with FET colleges, Setas, and employers.

The country's two new universities would also start operating this year.

The intake for the University of Mpumalanga was 240 students, while the Sol Plaatje University in the Northern Cape would register 124 students.

The universities would increase their intake as new infrastructure was built.

“The number of students at the two new universities is expected to increase dramatically over the 10-year development plan with Sol Plaatje University growing to accommodate 7 500 contact students in a variety of programmes on its Kimberley Campus,” Nzimande said.

“The University of Mpumalanga will accommodate 15 000 contact students on its Nelspruit campus.”

The department would again operate its central application clearing house (CACH) system this year, which went live this week.

“The CACH service is for learners who qualify for higher education studies but have not been accepted at an institution of their choice at the time the matric results were released,” Nzimande said.

The system was also meant for pupils who did not apply at institutions before the closing dates last year.

They could register on the system via a call centre on 0860-356-635 or by sending an SMS with their names and ID number to 49 200.

“The CACH service will verify the learner’s information and forward it to institutions that still have unfilled places,” Nzimande said.

“Where places exist and applicants meet the requirements, institutions will contact students to offer them available places.” - Sapa


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