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#FeesMustFall? How much does it really cost to get your degree in South Africa

Posted by David Jenkins

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The #RhodesMustFall campaign was seemingly the start of the #SomethingMustFall revolution in South Africa. We saw things getting pretty heated late last year when this transpired into the #FeesMustFall campaign, where thousands of students across the country voiced their concerns about the rising cost of going to university. While President Zacob Zuma announced a zero percent fee increase for 2016 as a result of the protests, it doesn't mean that gaining a tertiary education is a realistic possibility for a vast number of students across South Africa. It is estimated that the average cost of obtaining a university degree in this country is as much as R35,000 annually to study a BCom, BA or a BSc - and that is just for the tuition - textbooks and stationary cost as much as R14,000 per year. Then, there are all the other outgoing expenses (rent, living costs, transport etc.), at an average of R120,000 per year. This adds up to a whopping cost of around R14,000 per month to attend university! It comes as no shock that students are questioning whether attending university is still a viable option, given the financial burden that comes along with it.

All of this has got us thinking...What does this mean for the Graduate Recruitment space? Will we still focus on finding talent in university graduates, or will we see a shift towards sourcing our future leaders in other ways? Let's watch this space...


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