National student financial aid scheme (NSFAS), financially empowering students

The bill of rights of South Africa’s constitution stipulates that the state has an obligation, through reasonable measured measures to progressively make education available and accessible at basic, adult and further education level. It is from this premise that Government has put in place intervention measures to ensure more access to education especially at tertiary level. One of the interventions Government has put in place is the establishment of the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS).

The NSFAS is the South African governments student loan and bursary scheme. It was established in 1999 to make higher education possible for financially disadvantaged students through loans and concessions. This facility covers 25 public universities and 50 public TVET colleges throughout the country and funding has grown from R441 million in 1999 to R8.5 billion in 2013.

NSFAS loans are granted to students who have the academic potential to succeed at a university and who qualify in terms of the NSFAS means test for financial aid. These loans do not require guarantees or sureties from parents or guardians.The repayment terms are also reasonable and based on what you earn after you leave university.

Some of the requirements for this loan include letter of acceptance from the public university or college where you have applied to study, grade 12 certificate, South African Identity Document, proof of parents income, certified copies of birth certificates and Identity Documents, if you have a permanent disability, a letter from the doctor should confirm proof.

To apply for this loan, National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) can be contacted on 0860067327.

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