Northern Trust Corporation which has been sponsoring University of Botswana graduate students since 2011 through the UB Foundation (UBF) has extended its scholarship programme for another 10 years to 2030. The announcement was made by UB Foundation Board Chairman, Mr Satar Dada, during a ceremony held at UB recently to award 22 graduate students sponsorship to pursue Master’s Degree study programmes in different fields at the university.
To date, Northern Trust has donated an amount of USD165 000 (Approximately P1.9 million) as part of its corporate social responsibility to support “first-in-the-family” students to undertake Master’s degree study programmes in economics, finance, statistics, business and related fields at the University of Botswana.
The Northern Trust sponsorship programme is then Bank of Botswana Governor, Ms Linah Mohohlo’s initiative. As part of on-going community development initiatives, Ms Mohohlo approached Northern Trust Company (NT) to consider sponsoring Batswana students to pursue Master’s degree programmes at the University of Botswana. Since 2011, Northern Trust has been supporting the University of Botswana by providing graduate scholarships.
Meanwhile, at the same occasion, UB Foundation and Motor Centre Botswana also donated 462 tablets and five special laptops worth P750 000 to University of Botswana Disability Support Services Unit. The Foundation donated the gadgets as part of efforts to guarantee continued education and support blended teaching and learning to mitigate against the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on learners and staff. The gadgets will, therefore, enable students to continue with their classes without any hindrance.
In his comments, Mr Dada, said the award of scholarships and donation of the gadgets reaffirmed the Foundation’s role as a leader in advancing tertiary education through partnerships.
“I am more than gratified to say the donations and scholarships we have called you here to witness today, not only demonstrate our commitment towards assisting University of Botswana students but are a testimony of our desire as the foundation to see them realise their dreams as graduates,” stated Mr Dada.
Meanwhile, in his welcome remarks UB Vice Chancellor, Professor David Norris, said the University was on a transformative process part of which was to enhance online education. Professor Norris said in that regard, students were being provided with data bundles to access online learning.
Minister of Tertiary Education, Research, Science and Technology, Dr Douglas Letsholathebe, commended UB Foundation for sponsoring students for Master’s Degree programmes besides donating digital equipment at a time when the world was looking for solutions using technology. Dr Letsholathebe encouraged the students to use the equipment and scholarships wisely given that was a once in lifetime opportunity.
Acting Deputy Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, Professor Happy Siphambe, applauded UBF and Motor Centre for the donations. Professor Siphambe said the mobile devices would contribute positively towards the welfare of needy students as well as those living with disabilities to participate actively in education.