Minister Nzimande engages higher education and training stakeholders on growth and infrastructure expansion plans
6 Jul 2012
Expansion of existing infrastructure, partnerships with Further Education and Training (FET) Colleges and the creation of new learning centres are some of the proposed strategies for the growth of the Durban University of Technology (DUT).
This was contained in a comprehensive presentation by the Vice Chancellor of the University, Professor Ahmed Bawa, at the university’s Indumiso Campus in Imbali outside Pietermaritzburg this morning.
Minister of Higher Education and Training, Dr Blade Nzimande and his deputy, Mr Mduduzi Manana, the provincial MEC for Education, Mr Senzo Mchunu and the provincial MEC for Economic Development, Mr Mike Mabuyakhulu were in the audience, which included Sector Education and Training Authorities (SETAs) and FET Colleges’ representation.
Minister Nzimande has spent the last two days visiting various higher education and training institutions in the province to meet with stake-holders, including students, workers and management, to discuss their challenges, plans for growth and infrastructure expansion within the context of government’s R2, 5 billion allocation towards the refurbishment and construction of new campuses of FET Colleges over the next three years.
Professor Bawa told the Minister and his delegation that one of the areas where the DUT is planning to grow is on the technology front where by end of 2014, the plan is to have 50% of its programmes on a technology learning platform with FET Colleges and learning sites used for face to face interaction.
Minister Nzimande will also conduct a site visit at the Umgungundlovu FET College where recent financial commitments made by the Department include a R57, 3 million conditional grant allocations as well as a bursary allocation of R25, 9 million, both allocations for 2012.
In discussions and site visits at the Mthashana FET College the common thread in the issues brought to the Minister’s attention by stakeholders of Kwa Gqikazi and Emandleni campuses centred around the availability of NSFAS support, poor infrastructure of the residences and lecture halls, water shortages that affected residences and the need for programmes that are relevant to South Africa’s market and economic growth projections.
Mthashana is one of the 12 priority sites for infrastructure development in the R2, 5 billion allocation, which will cover the construction and refurbishment of workshops, lecture halls, equipment, IT systems and networks as well as student accommodation.
Minister Nzimande told stakeholders at Mthashana that Northern KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) is one of the growth points for College Education in the Northern KZN region, with Mthashana FET College central to that plan.
Government’s bursary support to FET College students has increased four-fold within the last two years from R 318 million in 2010 to R1, 235 billion in 2011 to R 1.7 billion in 2012 for all FET college students who meet the eligibility criteria of financial need and academic performance.
Tel: 012 312 5555 / 5538
Issued by: Department of Higher Education and Training
6 Jul 2012
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