Johannesburg, South Africa – More than 140 university graduates from underprivileged backgrounds will be honoured this evening by the Sasol Foundation Trust for their exceptional achievements in science, technology engineering and mathematics.
Housed in this programme are beneficiaries of the Foundation’s Science and Engineering Undergraduate Bursary Programme, Science Fellowship Programme, Education Fellowship programme and STEM Teacher Support Programme.
“We would like to extend our heartfelt congratulations to the class of 2018. They are a beacon of hope and inspiration to those seeking to one day be in their shoes. We are proud of how far they have come, not only as individuals but also as successful academics”, said Charlotte Mokoena, Executive Vice President for Human Resources and Corporate Affairs.
Since its establishment in 2008, the Foundation’s mandate was to help alleviate bottlenecks in the country’s schooling system; boost the vocational skills pool; and create tertiary educational opportunities for learners from low income households in South Africa.
Ten years later, the Foundation has provided bursaries to more than 1500 beneficiaries from previously disadvantages communities, most of them women, to study towards degrees in science and engineering. Of these, more than 800 have obtained degrees with substantial publication outputs and patents by those at postgraduate level.
”In 2008, the foundation’s primary mandate was to drive STEM education at all levels of the education value chain across the country. I sincerely believe that the past 10 years has seen the Foundation discharging this mandate with great pride and diligence. I would once again like to thank and congratulate our partners for a successful tenure, ” said Dr Yvonne Muthien, Chairperson of Sasol Inzalo Foundation.
Although the Sasol Inzalo transaction reached the end of its tenure this year, the work of the Foundation continues. Its mandate has been enhanced to include developing a strong foundation for early childhood education and has been renamed as the Sasol Foundation Trust. The Foundation seeks to contribute to strengthening the education system by addressing the early stages of development of a child, challenges which if not addressed, impact cognitive development and hence affect learning later on. Through this mandate, a portfolio of programmes will be developed aimed at intervening in the entire education value chain.
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