Standard Bank has unveiled a K120 million multi-year Bursary program for four public universities in Malawi.
Each of the four varsities will receive K30 million in tranches split over the next three years. The universities to benefit are University of Malawi, Malawi University of Science & Technology (MUST), Mzuzu University, and Lilongwe University of Agriculture and natural Resources (Luanar). For UNIMA, the selected constituent colleges are Chancellor and Polytechnic.
Speaking during the launch in Blantyre, Standard Bank Head of Corporate &Investment Banking Frank Chantaya said the bank will invest a total of K120 million for the next three years
"The Bursary program will cater for six students from each University until they finish their university education.The objective of this initiative is to ease financial problems faced by some of the students," said Chantaya.
Chantaya said the support to public varsities is not an isolated intervention by the bank but a continuation of its contributions to grow mother Malawi through support to the education.
"At tertiary and vocational education level, Standard Bank has this year provided assistance to DAPP for the rehabilitation of its colleges, provided ICT support to TEVET with 25 computers, built school blocks in Chiradzulu and since last year we have been running a Girl Mentorship Program in partnership with UNICEF whose goal is to keep the Girl Child in school," he said
He said the bank believes that education is a catalyst and lubricant to economic growth.
"Clearly our interventions in the education sector are cross-cutting and designed to respond to pertinent needs at any given time. We therefore pledge to continue working closely with the Malawi Government to support education in Malawi," said the CIB head.
In his remarks Minister of Education, Science& Technology Bright Msaka said government was grateful with Standard Banks's initiative.
"Government is deeply grateful for the generosity that has been shown by Standard Bank to offer an amount of K120 million for scholarships to needy students that are going to the government universities. As you are aware because of various challenges that the economy faces students have to pay fees in order to study in the university and this support will go a long way in assisting needy students to access education,"said Msaka.
Unima Vice chancellor Professor John Saka said the selection of the beneficiaries will be done on merit and not just in need but those that are outstanding.
The sponsorship will cater for to tuition fees and other related cost such as accommodation, food and books, among other necessities.