Funding Africa’s future leaders’ studies

The University Of Cape Town Graduate School Of Business, through two of its specialised units, continues to invest in Africa’s future leaders, and is calling for scholarship applications from across the continent for its 2017 academic year.

The UCT Graduate School of Business (GSB) is inviting motivated leaders from across Africa, with a track record of action who would like an injection of skills to help them go further to apply for one of several scholarships available at the school in 2017.

In recent years the GSB, through the Bertha Centre for Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship and the MTN Solution Space, has made significant investments in the development of Africa’s future leaders through access to scholarships.

To date over R6 million has been committed in scholarship funding for GSB Masters and PhD programmes. This has been made possible through the generous support of funders, including GSB Alumni, the Bertha Foundation, the Canon Collins Trust and the MTN Group.

“We’re delighted to be able to continue this funding into 2017 and are inviting prospective African students who would like to study either towards their MBA or Master of Philosophy in Inclusive Innovation at the UCT GSB to apply for a scholarship,” says Dr Francois Bonnici, Director of the Bertha Centre.

“Through the scholarships the Bertha Centre hopes to support those who want to address our continent’s greatest challenges. We want to encourage especially those seeking social change to apply and those interested in understanding and/or challenging the current ideas of business and what it does and is used for,” says Bonnici.

The Bertha Centre, a specialised unit at the GSB established in 2011 in partnership with the Bertha Foundation, seeks to support: changemakers; social activists, entrepreneurs and innovators and out-of-the-box thinkers. Previous Bertha Centre Scholars include co-founder of Lumanki, Francois Petousis; Pimp-my-Book founder Mpodumo Doubada as well as Business Day columnist, and Livity Africa Deputy Managing Director Zamandlovu Ndlovu.

“Through the generous support of our donors and sponsors we are able to cover tuition fees for our Masters programmes and provide additional financial support for living and travel costs where needed,” says Sarah-Anne Arnold, Manager of the MTN Solution Space.

The MTN Solution Space, established at the GSB in 2014 in partnership with the MTN Group, seeks to support problem solvers – doers, makers, thinkers and creators – who continually seek to advance and leverage technologies for the well-being of Africans

. Previous MTN Scholars include Rudzani Mulaudzi co-founder of Gradesmatch and Lianne du Toit Vice Chairperson of Silicon Cape and founder of GovHackSA. While scholars are distinct in their professional goals and ambitions and hail from all over Africa, they are united in their common goal: to have a significant impact in the world,” says Arnold.

Geoff Bick, Acting Director of the GSB, says that the school continues to enjoy an outstanding reputation both in Africa and more broadly and is well placed to further the careers and increase the impact of committed change makers.

“The UCT GSB full-time MBA is still the only MBA in Africa to be ranked in the Financial Times ranking of the top 100 MBAs in the world and it offers one of the best business educations on the continent. The GSB MBA curriculum is also the first in Africa to incorporate social innovation as a core subject. Equally groundbreaking is the MPhil in Inclusive Innovation – an interdisciplinary research-based degree that leads to the practical prototyping of new business models aligned to African markets – a first of it’s kind on the continent,” he says.

To be eligible for the scholarships, applicants must be a citizen of an African country, and must first be accepted onto the programme of their choice.

Anyone interested in applying for a Bertha Centre or MTN Solution Space scholarship should visit the GSB Scholarships information web page here. The deadline for applications is 31 October 2016.