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08 February 2012

Eleven high-achieving matriculants from South Durban schools have received bursaries from SAPREF to study chemical, electrical or mechanical engineering as part of the crude oil refinery's Talent Pipeline Programme.

The learners completed grade 12 in 2011 at schools in Amanzimtoti, Isipingo, Umlazi, Wentworth and Merebank. Between them they attained 48 As in grade 12. They will now study at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, University of Cape Town and Pretoria University. The total value of the bursaries for the four year courses is over R2 million and includes tuition, examination costs, residence fees, meals and books.
Thandeka Msane, former head girl at Wentworth Secondary School who attained 5 As in matric, expressed her feelings about the bursary: "The bursary means a new beginning for me. I have an opportunity now that I would not have had if I were not part of the SAPREF Talent Pipeline Programme as my family would not have been able to fund my university studies. I have always loved maths and science at school and chemical engineering was a natural choice for me, especially after being exposed to SAPREF and its petrochemical refining processes.”

SAPREF launched the Talent Pipeline Programme last year. It is aimed at introducing grade 10-12 learners from South Durban to a career in oil refining. The programme provides financial and academic support to selected learners to help improve their school performance. A life skills development programme is part of the package. In addition, each learner is allocated a SAPREF mentor to guide them through the programme. The learners spend their mid-year vacation at SAPREF getting to know the oil refining industry. In total 58 learners from 18 high schools in South Durban were originally selected for the programme.

“SAPREF sees this programme as an innovative and holistic intervention which will create a pool of skilled young engineers for both the organisation and the country”, said Lindiwe Khuzwayo, SAPREF’s sustainable development manager. "Such projects form an integral part of SAPREF’s continuous efforts to nurture talented youngsters from SAPREF’s neighbouring communities."

For more information please contact:

Margaret Rowe
Communications Manager
Tel: 031 480 1892 or 082 880 4905


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