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Students Call For New Higher Education Minister To Address NSFAS Challenges



Students Call For New Higher Education Minister To Address NSFAS Challenges

Students Call For New Higher Education Minister To Address NSFAS Challenges. President Cyril Ramaphosa recently appointed Dr. Nobuhle Nkabane as the new Minister of Higher Education, succeeding Blade Nzimande, who served from 2019 to 2024. This appointment comes at a crucial time for South Africa’s higher education sector, amidst pressing challenges that threaten to undermine its progress.

New Minister Takes Charge

Dr. Nkabane, formerly the deputy minister of Mineral Resources and Energy, brings a wealth of experience to her new role. Her appointment has been met with optimism by student unions, who view her as a capable leader with a deep understanding of academic and governmental dynamics.

Challenges Facing Higher Education

During Nzimande’s tenure, issues such as rising tuition fees, increasing student debt, and disruptions in NSFAS funding distribution have loomed large. These challenges have significantly impacted students from poor and working-class backgrounds, hindering their access to quality education.

Student Unions Response

The South African Union of Students (SAUS) has warmly welcomed Dr. Nkabane’s appointment, citing her intellectual rigor and strategic approach as essential qualities for tackling the sector’s challenges. They have highlighted coordination issues within higher education institutions and administrative hurdles at NSFAS as key areas needing urgent attention.

Reforming NSFAS

Central to Dr. Nkabane’s mandate is the reform of NSFAS to enhance its efficiency and inclusivity. SAUS stresses the importance of extending NSFAS’s support beyond traditional beneficiaries to include the “missing middle” – students who don’t qualify for free education but still face financial barriers.

Future Outlook

Looking ahead, Dr. Nkabane faces a critical task of implementing reforms that ensure NSFAS remains a cornerstone of educational support for the poor and working class. SAUS remains optimistic about her ability to address these challenges effectively and looks forward to engaging with her to discuss the sector’s future under her leadership.


Dr. Nobuhle Nkabane’s appointment marks a pivotal moment for South Africa’s higher education landscape. With her leadership, there is hope for meaningful reforms that will alleviate financial burdens on students and foster a more inclusive and equitable educational environment. As she assumes her new role, the expectations are high, and the challenges significant, but the determination to improve the educational prospects of South Africa’s youth remains unwavering.

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Must You Reapply For NSFAS When Transitioning From University To TVET College?



Must You Reapply For NSFAS When Transitioning From University To TVET College?

Must You Reapply For NSFAS When Transitioning From University To TVET College? The National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) is a comprehensive financial aid program designed to assist students in pursuing higher education at public universities and TVET Colleges in South Africa. If you’re transferring from one type of institution to another, you might wonder about the implications for your NSFAS funding.

Transitioning From University to TVET College

Are you aiming for a rewarding career but find that traditional university education isn’t the right fit for you? NSFAS can help you realize your goals by providing funding for TVET Colleges. This support can turn your passion into reality by covering essential educational expenses.

What NSFAS Covers

NSFAS offers bursaries and loans to cover the costs of:

  • Tuition
  • Registration
  • Essential living expenses (accommodation, transportation, etc.)

Do You Need To Reapply for NSFAS?

If you are transitioning from a university to a TVET College, it is crucial to understand the NSFAS policy on reapplication. According to the NSFAS Eligibility Criteria and Conditions for Financial Aid:

“Students who change institution types (i.e., shift from TVET College to University or vice versa) must re-apply for funding”.

This means that if you are moving from a university to a TVET College, you will need to reapply for NSFAS funding. It’s also important to note that NSFAS only funds students pursuing their first certificate or undergraduate qualification.

How to Apply for NSFAS

Step 1: Create A MyNSFAS Account

  1. If you already have a myNSFAS account, click on ‘login’ at the myNSFAS portal and complete your information.
  2. If you don’t have a myNSFAS account, click on ‘Create account’ and follow the prompts to set up your account.

Step 2: Log Into Your myNSFAS Account

  1. Use your login details to access your myNSFAS account.

Step 3: Complete The Application

  1. Click on ‘Apply’.
  2. Answer the questions displayed on the screen.
  3. If necessary, upload any supporting documents (often, this step is not required).
  4. Click on ‘Submit’.

Step 4: Receive Your Application Reference Number

After submitting your application, you will receive an application reference number. Keep this number safe for future reference.

NSFAS Funding Eligibility

NSFAS provides funding to students from poor and working-class backgrounds who are studying towards a qualification at one of the 26 public universities or 50 TVET Colleges.


Transitioning from a university to a TVET College can be a significant step in your educational journey. While this move requires reapplying for NSFAS funding, the process is straightforward and ensures that you continue to receive the financial support needed to achieve your educational and career goals.

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