South African students gain new insights from Chinese scholarships

china-flat-smallA number of young South Africans have been able to embark on a life-changing travel and learning opportunity after receiving NSF scholarships to study in China.

All have expressed their appreciation for the opportunity to realise their dreams and to experience a different culture and global perspective.

With the help of a NSF bursary, Busiswa Buso obtained her Masters of Economics in Finance at Zhongnan University of Economics and Law in China.

“Since going to China, I have learned to appreciate my country more than I used to.

And I have now gained the international exposure and learned what they are doing better than we Africans. With that mentality I am eager to transfer the knowledge gained from China, which I believe will be beneficial.

“When I was still young, my dream was to work for some well-known companies until I came back from China. I realised success is in our hands, all we have to do is to unite, be creative and innovate and promote the spirit of entrepreneurship.  The Chinese economy is rapidly growing through entrepreneurship and innovation, which I believe we as Africans can also do.”

Thamsanqa Mahlobo, a young academic and research analyst in Environmental Resource and Development Economics, completed his Masters in Applied Economics at the College of International Trade and Economics at Hunan University. He has since become a lecturer in Environmental Sustainability at the Durban University of Technology and recently began a second Masters degree in Regional and Cultural Studies at Hiroshima University in Japan through a Japanese International Corporation Agency scholarship and the African Business Education Initiative.

“I wish NSF continues to open the eyes of young South Africans to their beauty that goes beyond our shores that indeed proves we can change the world, Mahlobo says.

Octavia Motshwane, who studied for a BComm at Wits, was appointed as an intern at the DHET when she applied to study in China. She obtained a Masters in financial Economics from Shanghai University of Finance and Economics.

“This bursary has provided me a life time worth of memories, an opportunity to study in another country and today I have a Masters degree due to the bursary,” Motshwane says.

“I am now ready to find a permanent role in the Financial industry. I am ready to climb the corporate ladder, to learn to be a manager and a CFO in the long run.

“I appreciate the NSF and the team that took great care of us abroad. The communication was on point and I would ask a lot of questions yet someone would always be there to answer.”

Sharissa Muniappen, who struggled to get accepted for her chosen course at a South African University, obtained an MMBS, Bachelor of Clinical Medicine at Central South University, China and is now on track to become a specialist in Neurology.

“No words would ever be able to express my utmost gratitude to the NSF. Thank you for investing in my future and for helping me to realise my dream.”

Kerillyn Padarath who studied for a MBBS at the Central South University-Xiangya School of Medicine, had similar problems finding a place at a South African University.

The bursary relieved the heavy financial burden of her chosen field of study and offered her an opportunity to experience another culture and learn a new language.

“Having lived and studied in China for six years, I was given the opportunity to work with and learn from extraordinary people from all over the world. My university is affiliated with Yale and I had the opportunity of working with research professors and acquiring innovative skills from them. I also experienced the Chinese medical environment which was very different from our medical system.”

“The key from the DHET/NSF bursary is opportunity. I am forever grateful for the endless opportunities that I was afforded” says Padarath, who is hoping to get a PhD in orthopaedic surgery in South Africa.


DHET News is the online home for news generated by the Department of Higher Education and Training's e-bulletin.

Posted in December2016

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