School leavers with level 5 in Maths and English could have a chance to pursue an accounting degree at Walter Sisulu University.
The South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (Saica) is offering 100 bursaries for students to study accounting sciences at WSU in 2017.
This would be a great opportunity for underprivileged students to enter university with both tuition and accommodation secured for four years.
In partnership with the University of Cape Town (UCT), the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) and WSU, Saica have for four years been building the capacity of WSU and working towards the re-accreditation of its BCom (Accountancy).
WSU BCom will accept 120 first year students – 100 with full bursaries.
WSU spokeswoman Yonela Tukwayo said the re-accreditation had made the university as competitive and competent as other universities with accounting sciences.
“It is a critical recognition because it affords students a chance to write Saica’s initial test of competence. We feel exceptionally proud because now we are going to actively add to the few institutions in the province that offer rural children a chance to be developed in accredited accounting sciences and ensure transformation, “ said Tukwayo.
Saica had previously accredited WSU to offer the chartered accountancy undergraduate programme but the accreditation was lost due to staff changes and insufficient focus on the programme.
Noluntu Nzwana, who graduated in 2009 before the university was re-accredited, said the route to chartered accountancy became a bit longer without the accreditation.
“Taking into account the fact that the majority of the students in the university were from disadvantaged backgrounds, staying in varsity for an extra two years meant two extra years of poverty and that killed a lot of chartered accountancy dream,” said Nzwana.
In 2012 Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) minister Blade Ndzimande injected more than R84-million into the university to launch the re-accreditation project.
The project was conducted with 400 students who will now be allowed to write the Saica competency test, which in turn will take them a step closer to their chartered accountancy careers.
Re-accreditation means that now WSU students can be accepted by other universities without bridging courses, whereas before they had to re-do a year to qualify to write the Saica test of competence.
The project was envisaged to increase the number of black chartered accountants in the profession.
Tukwayo said the university had worked extremely hard with its partners to ensure that WSU could satisfy the Saica requirements.
“Truly, to us this has been a remarkable journey that has taught us a lot as an institution. The bursaries that are being handed out will assist many deserving students who will be part of a critical and scarce resource, and we are honoured to be a university that will train these professionals,” said Tukwayo