Two new universities to be confirmed for South Africa this year

 ·16 Feb 2022

The Department of Higher Education and Training says it will complete planning work on the formation of two new universities for South Africa this year.

Speaking in parliament during the national state of the nation debate this week, higher education minister Blade Nzimande said he has appointed a task team to conduct feasibility studies on the new universities, with a final report scheduled to be submitted by the end of the year.

The new University of Science and Innovation is expected to focus specifically on science and innovation subjects, including STEM subjects such as:

  • Data Science;
  • Machine-learning;
  • Artificial intelligence;
  • Blockchain;
  • Robotics;
  • Hydrogen-powered technologies such as smart transportation and logistics systems.

The second university will focus on crime detection and fighting and is expected to be built in Hammanskraal in northern Gauteng. It is hoped that the new university will improve the quality of general and specialised South African Police Service investigations.

Nzimande also confirmed that government plans to overhaul the curriculum and subjects at all of the country’s universities and colleges to better prepare students for finding jobs.

“Both our Universities and TVET colleges curricula are being reviewed and strengthened to be relevant to skills required by the national economy. We do this to align them with the needs of local employers, communities and the economy, particularly focusing on digital and related skills.”

Nzimande said that 10,000 TVET college graduates will also be offered workplace experience so that they complete their qualifications, thus improving their prospects for employability or starting their own small businesses.

“This is the beginning of opportunities that we plan to roll out every year, so we address the need for what is sometimes called in-service training for TVET college students,” he said.

“Learners will be paid a learnership allowance regulated in terms of the National Minimum Wage Act. We have also established entrepreneurship hubs at TVET colleges to support students to move into self-employment after completion of their programmes.”

Read: Six new mega social housing projects planned for South Africa

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