USAf open to engagements to assist students from war-torn Ukraine

CEO Ahmed Bawa says if possibilities of assisting existed, they would have to be explored despite that higher education institutions have just completed their intake for the year.


Universities South Africa (USAf) organisation says that it is open to engagements with education stakeholders to assist students returning from war-torn Ukraine get placements in local universities.

CEO of USAf Professor Ahmed Bawa told news broadcaster NewzroomAfrika that if possibilities of assisting students with placements existed, they would have to be explored despite that higher education institutions have just completed their intake for the year.

“Universities have just gone through the process of filling in spaces and this year there were about 210,000 places that were available for first-year students… and students who were already in the system,” said Bawa.

“We have no idea really what kind of programmes the students in Ukraine are studying and how that will match what is available here.

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“We will have to start by doing a major information collection to try and understand what the needs are and then to have a conversation with the department of education and training together with the universities to determine what is possible.

“Clearly, if there are any possibilities of bringing the students into the higher education system here then we should do that because they have suffered a lot, have been placed in conditions of trauma and we would like to kind of respond to that as positively as we can.”

The higher education system is faced with a mammoth task with regards to students intake as more than 800,000 pupils received their matric results in January.

The overall pass rate of the matric class of 2021 recorded 76.4%, improving by 0.2%.

A total of 256,031 pupils got bachelors, an increase from the previous year.

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