To celebrate the official launch of the Mukuru Education Fund, Africa’s leading remittances-focused company and next-generation financial services platform, Mukuru, has named six successful candidates who were awarded its university bursaries for 2022 as part of its efforts around advancing technology in Africa.
McKinsey wrote in its “Future of Work in South Africa” that by 2030, tech-enabled jobs will require higher skills, resulting in demand for an additional 1.7-million technology graduates, meanwhile a report from the International Finance Corporation in 2020 estimated that there were about 700,000 developers across the entire continent of Africa which is contrasted to the state of California, which has about 630,000 developers.
The need for IT graduates on this continent is urgent but an incredibly high university dropout rate – in South Africa it is said to range from 50% to 60% depending on the source – threatens to prevent this void from being filled. One of the main reasons for leaving university before a degree is completed is a lack of financial resources. Mukuru, a proudly African fintech company, believes in supporting education so that young Africans can unlock their potential.
“Reducing inequalities underpins our CSI ethos,” says Mukuru CSI manager Deidré Vrede. “Access to quality education is crucial to achieving this, and so understanding that our business is built on driving inclusion it makes perfect sense to launch the Mukuru Education Fund to create further opportunities for young people who are excluded from quality education based on affordability,” she says.
The six students who were awarded the bursary add to the two students already enjoying Mukuru’s financial backing. The company says that it analyses the unique situation of each student and extends the support to include accommodation and travel if needed to ensure each student can take full advantage of the opportunity.
Mukuru CEO Andy Jury says that the fintech has grown into one of the largest financial services platforms on the continent because of its belief that if you provide opportunity where there previously was none, the effect is growth and prosperity.
“Not unlike driving financial opportunities for people in the diaspora to send and receive money and capitalise on the various financial solutions that our platform offers, we believe that by providing opportunities to achieve a quality education in technology, young people will be able to break out of the shackles of poverty and realise their own potential,” says Jury.
All recipients of the bursary scheme will receive a paid internship offer that they will partake in during the holidays. This provides the opportunity for the students who show the same growth mindset and dedication that forms part of the Mukuru DNA to receive potential job offers after their studies.
“It’s rewarding to see the effort and motivation that a young person puts into their work and studies when given the opportunity,” says Vrede. “The two students who had their bursaries renewed this year have shown so much growth already and we look forward to unlocking the same potential in the six new students.”
The eight recipients of the Mukuru Education Fund bursaries are Munesushe Kunyenda doing first year data engineering at Stellenbosch, Rufaro Mugara, who is a second year BSC student at UNISA, Pretty Mangwadi, who is doing first year computer science at WITS, Paidamoyo Mapfuwa, a second-year computer science and informatics student at the University of Johannesburg, Stanley Shikwambi, a second-year BSC Computer Science student from Stellenbosch, Janice Kwikidi, who is doing a first-year computer science degree at WITS, Ngonidzoshe Tinago, a second-year data science student at Sol Plaatjie University, and Triphin Mudzvangi, who is a third-year engineering student at Wits.