The University of Botswana Foundation awarded 32 Graduate Endowment Scholarships and five Northern Trust First-in-the-Family Scholarships at an award ceremony held at the University Stadium VIP lounge on October 18, 2018 from 10 am.
The Foundation is the fundraising arm of the University of Botswana mandated to engage the private sector and other stakeholders in partnerships with the University of Botswana to enhance excellence and promote quality higher education in Botswana. This has largely been achieved by growing a Graduate Scholarship Endowment Fund which is invested to sponsor graduate students every year. So far, over 250 graduate students have received scholarships through the fund which has grown to about P 8 million.
The endowment fund was set up in 2004 with an investment of just over P1 million to ensure that as many Batswana as possible have access to higher education. The fund has since made important contributions towards meeting the strategic objective of increasing the number of full-time graduate students at the University. The first set of 10 scholarships were awarded during the 2004/5 academic year from the interest earned on the Endowment Fund, and a further two were awarded from contributions made by Books Botswana and Botswana Insurance Fund Management (BIFM).
The Northern Trust First in the Family scholarships, on the other hand, takes their name from the US-based financial management corporation supporting the scholarships, which are offered to deserving students who are the first to attain a degree within their immediate family. Over P750 000 has been availed towards these since they were conceived in 2011, and 16 students have benefitted from them in the areas of Business and Economics.
The scholarship award ceremony was attended by representatives of the major sponsors of the Foundation’s fundraising events including Investec Assets Management; Ministry of Tertiary Education, Research, Science and Technology; Stanbic Bank Botswana; Debswana Mining Company; Dynamic Insurance Brokers; Letshego Holdings; Hollard Life, AON; BOCRA, IDM and Motor Centre. These Annual Gala Dinner and the Annual Golf Day have been the major source of revenue for the endowment fund.