St Mary’s Foundation provides endless possibilities for a brighter future. Dineo Mashamaite grew up in one of SA’s poorest townships, Alexandra. She was raised by her single mother with significant financial constraints. After struggling with limited resources at her local high school, Dineo went in search of opportunities in her grade 10 year – and enrolled in the Ikusasa Lethu Programme. After one year in the programme, marked improved and excellent academic results, Dineo was awarded a St Mary’s Foundation Scholarship. It was the Ikusasa Lethu Programme that set in motion the course of events that were to change Dineo’s life. Established by St Mary’s School, Waverley in 1990 and funded by the St Mary’s Foundation, the programme supports underprivileged pupils with mentorship and tuition to supplement limited resources at high schools around Johannesburg. The programme not only provides a short-term need – giving students the chance to better their academics – but invests long-term in students by providing the facilities and guidance to help them apply for tertiary education. For worthy and talented students like Dineo, it’s a chance at a bright future. And the results of the programme speak volumes: in 2016, the 91 programme participants achieved a 99% pass rate, with 65% of the students obtaining a ‘Bachelor’s Pass’, meaning they can study towards a Bachelor’s Degree at university. A brighter future Every Saturday morning, 275 eager high school learners are bussed from Alexandra township and surrounding areas to study sessions held at St Mary’s Waverley. One of these learners was 16-year-old Dineo. Through the programme, students like Dineo receive extra lessons in Mathematics, Physical Sciences, Life Sciences, English, Business Studies, Accounting, Geography and Computer Skills. The classes are taught by a dedicated team of teachers from St Mary’s Waverley and surrounding schools. Dineo was one of the top learners in the Ikusasa Lethu . . .
SEESA and Hot91.9FM are collaborating in April 2017 to provide one lucky candidate with the opportunity to win a bursary to the value of R100 000 to study towards a degree in Accounting. On 06 April 2017, Hot91.9FM’s Breakfast Show with Darren Scott announced that nominations are now open to stand a chance to win this bursary as part of Hot91.9FM’s #JoburgsHottestBursaries campaign. For the entire month of April 2017, listeners and the public can nominate candidates for this bursary by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with their motivation as to why they must be awarded the bursary. “Our goal is to contribute to South Africa’s future through tertiary education. We are starting with Accounting bursaries and hope to develop the successful candidates to Chartered Accountants.” – Roelof le Roux, SEESA Financial Director Candidate nominations are open until 30 April 2017, after which Hot91.9FM will announce the bursary winner in May 2017. For more information about this initiative, contact email@example.com. CLICK HERE to submit your press release to MyPR.co.za. . . .
APRIL 3, 2017: THE BOOK industry – like many others – is under pressure from technological change. Can it re-invent itself leveraging off this technology? Will the book format as we know it today survive? What do consumers really want from a book – the tactile or technological? These are questions Australian economist Paul Crosby has been grappling with as he tries to chart the future of the e-book on the wider book industry. Crosby, a Doctoral Fellow at the Department of Economics at Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia, will this week be giving a free public lecture in Grahamstown on his research into this topic. The lecture, titled, ‘Don’t judge a book by its cover: A discrete choice model of cultural experience good consumption’, is jointly hosted by Rhodes University Department of Economics, the Economic Society of South Africa (ESSA) and the South African Cultural Observatory (SACO). The SACO is a leading national think tank focused on monitoring, mapping, measuring and valuing South Africa’s cultural and creative economy. It is a project of the Department of Arts & Culture (DAC), launched in 2015, and hosted by the Nelson Mandela University in partnership with Rhodes and Fort Hare Universities. It is mandated to produce a working cultural information system for South Africa. “Technological change is transforming the book industry. In particular, the digitisation of books has given rise to a suite of new content delivery formats for publishers, such as the e-book and audiobook,” says Crosby. “While the rise in popularity of the e-book has been well documented the format’s influence on the future of the book industry is a matter of much conjecture and uncertainty. This is perpetuated by the fact that books are a cultural experience good – that is to say books possess varying degrees of cultural content, which may give rise to the presence of a cultural value that exists above and beyond a book’s value in exchange.” The lecture is based . . .
Framesby High School in Port Elizabeth was crowned the winner of the South African Institution of Civil Engineering (SAICE) Algoa Branch Aqualibrium Water competition, earlier this month. The South African National Roads Agency SOC Ltd (SANRAL) and Labco supported the event. Framesby High learners Donovan Jerling, Juandre Gilbert and Philip du Plessis will compete in the SAICE 14th annual Schools Water Competition, in July in Johannesburg. SAICE hosted the one-day competition at SANRAL’s offices on Saturday (25 March) to afford learners the opportunity of planning, designing, constructing and operating a water distribution network, whereby they encounter similar challenges that occur in managing an actual water distribution network of a town. "This competition demonstrates the importance of managing water distribution systems which are important to supply safe and clean drinking water to people. It also exposes the learners to the field of Civil Engineering and provides a glimpse into why Civil Engineers play a critical part in our infrastructure management," said Pieter Joubert, SAICE Algoa branch chairman. The participating schools included Framesby High School, Alexander Road High, Loyiso Senior Secondary, Mfesane Senior Secondary School, Newton Technical High school, Pearson High School all from Port Elizabeth and Brandwag High School from Uitenhage. SANRAL Southern Region's Marketing and Communications manager, Michelle Ah Shene said participating in SAICE events is an extension of SANRAL'S commitment to the development of the civil engineering field. Ah Shene said SANRAL promotes the importance of civil engineering through supporting projects like the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (NMMU) School of Engineering STEM Pipeline Project, bursary and scholarships and training civil engineering graduates in the SANRAL Southern Region Training Academy. Saturday’s competing teams were tasked to design a model water distribution network to . . .
The Arts & Culture Trust (ACT) is calling on young people with the dream of pursuing performing arts studies to apply for an ACT Scholarship. Matric learners and individuals under the age of 25, who are not currently registered for an undergraduate degree, are eligible to register online to do an audition. This year, there are three performing arts scholarships up for grabs worth R200,000 in total. Funded by the Nedbank Arts Affinity and the Dramatic, Artistic and Literary Rights Organisation (DALRO), and supported by The Market Theatre, the 2017 Scholarships Programme, strives to nurture young talent and provide tertiary education opportunities to young people with their sights set on pursuing performing arts training in 2018. Aspirant young performers are invited to apply in one of the following categories; acting, dancing, singing, or musical theatre. Once registered online, hopefuls will be required to perform two pieces of their choice, within their chosen category, at an audition. Musical theatre applicants are encouraged to perform pieces that showcase their competency as a triple threat performer (singer, dancer and actor). Auditions will be held in all nine provinces between late June and mid July 2017. ACT CEO Pieter Jacobs says this will ensure everyone is given an equal opportunity. “Over the years we have seen that exceptional talent is not only the preserve of those with access to development opportunities, and undertaking a national road trip to find the best talent has proved well worth it,” says Jacobs. Since 2009, The ACT Scholarship Programme has awarded 23 scholars and students with over R2,3 million worth of tertiary education funding, Jacobs says that this year they look forward to continuing this legacy. “It is tremendously rewarding to see previous recipients make their way into productions across the country,” he says. “To mention a few, Tankiso Mamabolo just finished a run as part of the Baxter Theatre’s production of . . .
Launched mid-2016, Nal’ibali’s FUNda Leader movement is an avenue for everyday South Africans who want to stand up for literacy in their communities to receive specialised training and support from the Nal’ibali reading-for-enjoyment campaign. Now a network of over 2 000 activists nationwide, Nal’ibali addressed the Western Cape members of its volunteer network at an imbizo on Saturday 25 March, focussing on the simple, yet effective role that young people and community members can play as reading role models to effect literacy change in their communities. Key to the FUNda Leader movement is the understanding that literacy change in South Africa is something that anyone and everyone can be involved in. Said Pumza Ndamase, Nal’ibali Training Coordinator: “One of the most powerful ways we can develop a generation of readers is by acting as reading role models for them.” Outlining the success that fellow FUNda Leaders have had in this area, the event was also an opportunity for members to engage with one another and share their ideas as well as successes and challenges in sustaining literacy in their communities. Further inspiring them, award-winning South African author and long-time literacy activist, Sindiwe Magona, shared her personal and professional journey to success; a tale that is testament to what can be achieved with determination, courage and encouragement – despite an apparent lack of immediate resources. Magona obtained her matric certificate and Bachelor’s degree while working as a domestic worker before going on to complete her Masters, and later received an honorary doctorate from a New York arts college. Recognising the role that her own reading role models played in her achievements, she shared details on their influence. Explained Ndamase: “Being a reading role model does not require special training or knowledge, but rather a willingness to engage children and teenagers in books and stories. Reading role models demonstrate reading as . . .
MARCH 28, 2017: THE South African Cultural Observatory (SACO) has awarded seven scholarships and bursaries for the 2017 academic year allocating over half a million Rand to supporting young academics conducting research across the creative and cultural industries (CCIs). The SACO awarded three honours bursaries, and three masters and one doctoral scholarship to students from the Universities of Pretoria, Johannesburg, Rhodes and the Cape Peninsula University of Technology. The students are collectively elated, with many saying it has eased a major financial burden, allowing them to focus on producing both exploratory and cutting-edge research. “Scholarships are critical for the arts, culture and heritage sectors and the CCIs, which are chronically under-funded but increasingly fundamental for the growth and development of the knowledge economy,” said Prof Richard Haines, SACO chief executive. The SACO is a project of the Department of Arts & Culture (DAC), hosted by the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University in partnership with Rhodes and Fort Hare Universities. This is its third round of scholarship awards. Boitumelo Rampya is analysing how different notions of ‘culture’ are mobilised in an attempt to solve disputes in the succession of the Rain Queen for her honours at the University of Johannesburg. “I think the SACO scholarship is really going to help students, especially those from disadvantaged backgrounds, to pursue their studies in the cultural sector, as the sector requires high levels of quite expensive education. I am overwhelmed with joy and very grateful to SACO for giving me this opportunity to pursue my studies. “The funding is going to help me tremendously as it will allow me to study harder knowing all my financial stress is over and focus more on my studies to pave a way for my academic journey toward a masters degree,” Rampya said. Zama Malusi Zwane, who is looking at cultural and social development through urban design at the . . .
Galway, Ireland – 23 March 2017: South African people are taking to the internet in greater numbers than ever before to gain workplace skills, according to new figures released by Alison. The organization, which is one of South Africa’s largest free e-learning providers, revealed that a small majority (57%) of its users in 2016 were female, and that the site is most popular in Gauteng, the Western Cape and KwaZulu-Natal. Mike Feerick, Founder and CEO of Alison, said: “South Africa has been quick to take up online learning. The feedback we’re getting from learners here suggests that they value the flexibility and breadth of subjects we can offer. It’s not a surprise to us that the majority of our South African learners are women; this reflects a pattern we have seen in other parts of the world.” According to newly released figures for 2016, the most popular courses including Touch Typing Training, Diploma in Project Management, Human Resources and Business Management & Entrepreneurship. Other top courses South African learners took included Web Design, Workplace Health and Safety, Psychology and Customer Service. Eric Corbett, Course Publishing Manager at Alison, said: “Increasingly, we’re seeing learners turn to us for skills that are vital to the workplace but don’t tend to receive much focus in schools – South Africa is no different. The range of free courses we’re offering is set to grow dramatically over the next 12 months, and we expect to grow our learner-base in South Africa in tandem with this. “We would encourage students, jobseekers and workers who want to upskill to consider how a course might help them achieve their goals.” Alison will celebrate its 10th birthday next month. The site currently boasts almost 10 million individual learners studying hundreds of courses. WHAT THEY SAY What our South African learners say about Alison: “There are so many great options that I am excited about. I’ve just completed the Microsoft . . .
(Pretoria) – Grade 10 pupils from three of Pretoria’s historically disadvantaged high schools have relived the age of dinosaurs thanks to the interactive DinosAlive Exhibition at Forest Hill City shopping centre in Centurion. One hundred sponsored life sciences pupils from Seshegong, Olievenhoutbosch and Steve Tshwete secondary schools were among the thousands of visitors getting up close to the prehistoric creatures during the five-week expo which wraps April 17. Forest Hill City general manager Annah Moremela said the centre management team enjoyed hosting the eye-opening exhibition, which featured 25 animatronic dinosaurs that blink, move their limbs and emit lifelike sounds. The moving models include the well-known Tyrannosaurus Rex and Triceratops as well as lesser-known species such as Spinosaurus and Ankylosaurus. “For us as a mall, it perfectly captures our twin objectives of providing great family entertainment and supporting education in our community.” Moremela said the Grade 10 pupils had been specifically selected, as the history of the earth formed a core component of the life sciences syllabus. “For pupils at under-resourced schools, the expo makes learning come alive in a fun, real and interactive way, and there will be special info boards to explain concepts like the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous periods. “Every info board contains a QR code linked to a We Chat application – scanning the code provides access to audio files with more info on each dinosaur.” A fossil display from the University of the Witwatersrand and a 20-minute movie about dinosaurs roaming the American national parks completed the educational experience, she said. “But aside from that, it’s an amazing adventure for the whole family – and a great way to spend the day during the school holidays.” Younger members of the family could look forward to “meeting” a baby dino, riding on a T.Rex’s back and having their faces painted like their favourite . . .
(East London) – More than 500 of East London’s poorest pupils in Duncan Village have received a boost in the form of new school shoes. The campaign is the culmination of a R200,000 national rollout by major malls in Gauteng and the Eastern Cape owned by South Africa’s largest black-owned JSE-listed property group, Rebosis Property Fund. Earlier in March, the Rebosis-owned Hemingways Mall, in partnership with celebrated local NGO, Sakhisizwe, handed out 532 pairs of new school shoes to five schools in the Duncan Village area. These were Nontutuzelo, Makinana, Nompumelelo, Lujiza and Masakhe primary schools. “We are honoured to be making a difference to our underprivileged pupils by gifting them with a sense of self-confidence and belonging as they walk the road to an education. The young pupils of East London are our city’s future,” said Hemingways Mall general manager Reinette van Tonder. Instilling pride among pupils would help them to succeed in often-difficult circumstances, she added. According to Rebosis group marketing manager Deborah Bailey, providing school shoes was a tangible and practical solution, giving relief to the children – many of whom cannot afford public transport and are forced to walk long distances each day. “As part of our social and ethical mandate, Rebosis Property Fund has recognised an overwhelming need to contribute positively to communities surrounding its shopping centres,” said Bailey. She said each of Rebosis’s four major malls – Forest Hill City in Centurion, Baywest Mall in Port Elizabeth, and Hemingways Mall and Mdantsane City in East London – had carefully selected their beneficiary schools according to need within their respective communities. CLICK HERE to submit your press release to MyPR.co.za. . . .