The FIT programme at UP is a bursary and student support programme that involves the synergy of three bursary funders namely, FASSET, ISFAP and Thuthuka. All of these are funding and bursary programmes aimed at students studying towards becoming a CA(SA) and a few other commerce degrees. The structure of the financial support provided by these three funders differ slightly between these programmes, but they all include tuition fees; textbooks; a contribution towards accommodation; and psycho-social support.
At UP, these three programmes have chosen to work together and pool our resources as the “FIT” team, in order for our team to optimise our reach and use the strengths of each team member to have maximum support impact on our students. The FIT team is managed by four programme managers and is supported by an administrator and academic trainees.
The vision of the FIT team is: “To establish and maintain a reliable, approachable and exemplary support system for FIT students and thereby be a positive catalyst in these students achieving academic success and assisting them to grow to be FIT-for-life.” This effectively also means that we want to produce UP alumni who are well-rounded individuals and employees who can function independently and effectively in the workplace.
What can you expect from the UP-FIT Programme?
Students will register for all the regular UP modules in their study area.
All students who are recipients of a FASSET, ISFAP or Thuthuka bursary are additionally part of the UP-FIT Programme.
The FIT Programme relies on UP’s core offerings and the experienced lecturers and academic support provided. FIT students are expected to fully participate and are not treated any different from any other students as far as academic matters are concerned.
Psycho-social support in developing skills and competencies to assist students in their studies as well as to prepare students for the workplace are part of the FIT Programme.
Dedicated Programme Managers will assist FIT students on their journey, this includes the on-going monitoring of student performance.
Please note that any student who applies for any of the FIT bursaries will still need to apply to study BCom Accounting Sciences at the University of Pretoria by following the University’s normal application process.
Please also note that the number of students that can be accommodated on the UP-FIT Programme is limited due to limited financial resources of bursars and capacity of the UP FIT team.
UP-FIT Programme Administrator
The FASSET bursary
Since 2016, the University of Pretoria has been partnering with FASSET (Finance and Accounting Services Sector Education and Training Authority) to secure bursary funding for students studying towards qualifications that align with the scarce skills within the Finance and Accounting Services Sector. The bursary is typically aimed at 2nd year or final year students studying towards a BCom Accounting Sciences, BCom Financial Sciences, or BCom Investment Management qualification. Related postgraduate qualifications have also been funded in the past.
Every year the University has to re-apply for grant funding from FASSET, and thus students who receive a FASSET bursary for a particular academic year, would not automatically qualify for funding in the following year.
The bursary amount is determined by FASSET every year. Since 2021, the bursary award per student has been capped at R90 000, with contributions towards tuition, textbooks, and accommodation. The UP FASSET team also offers structured support to bursary recipients in the form of a tailored mentorship model and other support interventions.
The bursary criteria is determined by FASSET every year. In the past only disabled students and black South African students were able to apply but going forward FASSET has indicated that a limited number of students from other race groups could potentially qualify. Only students who come from households with income of R0 – R600 000 pa will qualify for the FASSET bursary.
The ISFAP Bursary
ISFAP was established as a funding model to sustainably cater for the higher education needs and costs of South Africa’s poor and middle-class students. The programme aims to fast track South Africa’s skills production for the 21st century by funding the higher education costs of mainly students studying towards a career in Occupations of High Demand (OHDs). At the University of Pretoria, this includes Actuaries, Accountants, Engineers and Medical Doctors. ISFAP joined the University of Pretoria in 2017 and saw its first group of graduates in 2019.
ISFAP has since expanded its funding within the Economic Management Sciences to fund various BCom degrees and not only BCom Accounting Sciences.
Applications for the bursary are done online at the following link: https://applyonline.isfap.org.za/
. To qualify for the bursary, a student must apply in their matric year and must fall within the gross household income range of R0 to R600 000 per annum. The student must also be a South African citizen.
Funding for the bursary includes tuition fees, accommodation costs, meal allowance, living allowance, books and a laptop. Students remain on the bursary until they graduate their undergraduate degree and as long as they keep progressing to the next academic year. ISFAP does not fund postgraduate degrees.
The bursary applications usually open around May and close around the end of October. If students have any queries or concerns, they can email ISFAP head office at [email protected]
or phone them at 087 805 8500.
The Thuthuka Bursary Fund
The name “Thuthuka” (a Zulu verb meaning “to develop”) was chosen by SAICA to designate its transformation initiatives related to increasing the number of African and Coloured Chartered Accountants in South Africa.
The Thuthuka Bursary Fund is administered by SAICA. It aims to assist academically-talented African and Coloured South African students to pursue a BCom Accounting Sciences degree in order to become Chartered Accountants. Thuthuka applications are managed and awarded by SAICA to students with a financial need (financial need as determined by the NSFAS financial means test). The Bursary Fund allocates successful applicants at various participating universities, including the University of Pretoria. Funding for the bursary includes tuition fees, accommodation costs, meal allowance, living allowance, textbooks and other support.
Applications for the bursary are done online at the following link: https://www.thuthukabursaryfund.co.za/
. Bursary applications usually open in March of the applying students’ matric year and close during August of that year (i.e. the year before the student starts their BCom Accounting Sciences degree at UP). Once a student is on the Thuthuka bursary, the student is carried on the bursary until the student completes his or her degree and PGDAS, as long as the student continues to pass. If a student fails any year, their bursary will be cancelled. Very limited seats are sometimes available for second and third year students who can apply at the same link above for the following year of study before the closing date. Should students have any queries regarding the application process, students can send an email to [email protected]
or call 011 621 6600.