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South African Business 2023

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The 2023 Guide to Business and Investment in South Africa.


A STUDENT RECRUITMENT INITIATIVE TO ATTRACT ACADEMICALLY TALENTED RURAL STUDENTS TO REGISTER AT SOL PLAATJE UNIVERSITY SINCE ITS INCEPTION IN 2013, SOL PLAATJE UNIVERSITY (SPU) HAS MADE SIGNIFICANT PROGRESS AND HAS GROWN TO BECOME A PERMANENT PRESENCE IN KIMBERLEY, THE NORTHERN CAPE, AND THE SOUTH AFRICAN HIGHER EDUCATION SECTOR. Sol Plaatje University is still developing as a university, and faces significant challenges in meeting the steep student growth targets that the institution agreed to with the government. The demographics of both the student body and its graduates suggest that SPU attracts students from all nine provinces, with the main concentrations being from the major towns in the Northern Cape and the North-West Provinces. There is however a challenge in attracting students from rural areas. The Northern Cape and North West Province are two of the largest and most sparsely populated provinces in South Africa. The economic drivers in these provinces are mainly mining and agriculture, but new economies around the Square Kilometre Array project and alternative energies are emerging. Many rural learners are caught in the poverty trap after finishing their high school education because they cannot find opportunities within these major or emerging economies. Therefore, a lot of talent is lost because these learners, although talented, are precluded from going to University. In the absence of any sort of stimulus plan for education that will level the playing field for rural learners regarding access to higher education, Sol Plaatje University wants to create a pipeline of academically talented learners from rural areas and see them register for a tertiary qualification at the University.

RESEARCH HAS SHOWN THAT A SINGLE GRADUATE FROM A UNIVERSITY, HAS AN IMMEDIATE IMPACT ON THE LIVES OF TEN OTHERS WHEN THEY RETURN TO THEIR COMMUNITY. ONE GRADUATE FROM A RURAL COMMUNITY CAN BE A CATALYST FOR ECONOMIC GROWTH! TALENT PIPELINE PROGRAMME The Talent Pipeline Programme (TPP) at Sol Plaatje University is a pre-university enrichment programme aimed at increasing the academic, social, and psychosocial preparation of learners to enter higher education. We will identify the top ten performing learners in grades 10, 11 and 12 from a broad range of underresourced schools in the Northern Cape Province. The learners will be accommodated at the University during their school holidays (one week in March, two weeks in June and one week in September) and participate in a programme that focuses on a psychosocial, educational enrichment curriculum of deep immersion in ten subject areas: Mathematics, Scientific Thinking, Science, Molecular Literacy, Computer Science, Language, Economics and Law, Diversity Studies and International Relations. The academic instruction will be accompanied by a personal skills development curriculum (life skills, sport, art and music) focusing on coping and success mechanisms. Programmes such as the TPP which are run elsewhere have been highly successful in creating a pipeline of excellent learners from under-resourced schools that enter University and have already produced several medical doctors, nurses, actuaries, accountants, economists, and engineers who have positively impacted their communities. EDUCATORS ENHANCEMENT PROGRAMME We take pride in SPU being located within the Northern Cape Province; thus, we must play a part in dealing with some of the general issues in our space. A priority is to contribute towards improving the quality of schooling in our province to enable young people from these parts of the country to access post-secondary education. We will therefore run an Educators Enhancement Programme as part of the TPP for Mathematics and Science Educators from the participant schools. This programme will ensure that the learners have the necessary support in their studies, receive the appropriate academic interventions at school, and that their teachers encourage their commitment to success. Through this enhancement programme, we will assist educators in teaching and assessing in ways that make the transition from high school to University smoother, thereby facilitating access. We also endeavour to ensure that educators have the appropriate technology, access to data and connectivity, and gain experience using online resources for teaching and collaboration. The Educator Enhancement Programme will be a residential workshop which runs over two weeks in June on the SPU premises.

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