“Twenty years ago all our students coming for career consultations were intent on pursuing a career in Law.” So says Natalie Rabson, Skills Development Consultant at Boston City Campus & Business College. “Now, however, so many of the prospective students we see want to study IT” she says. The Information and Communication Technology (ICT) industry is growing exponentially, and is clearly one of the most exciting and rapidly-expanding industries. “I believe that this is partly because IT affects every industry, from medicine to accounting. All professions and professionals must have good IT knowledge, not only to operate in their industry, but also to remain relevant and competitive,” says Rabson.
“Unfortunately, there is still a marked lack of female representation in the IT workforce, and we have been approached by a trust which wants to promote Black females in this industry”
The Boston Education Trust has identified this area of scarce skills, with particular reference to Black females,” says Craig Stollard, one of the trustees. “We identified this gap in labour supply and we have set a goal to rectify this by financially helping Black females to study IT. “Our goal is, on a national level, to produce IT graduates who will be work ready in their fields and be productive in the ICT sector”
Stollard has identified some challenges for female IT graduates, saying that funds are clearly one of the main issues. Another, he says, is geographical in nature. “Because Boston has 45campuses nationally, we created easier access for those wishing to pursue higher education in IT. They do not have to leave home. We realise, especially with Black females, that they are often carers and homemakers, and it is more productive for them to stay home while they study and not move into a University residence”. And, of course, Stollard believes that there are gender stereotypes in this industry. “That is another hurdle the Black females face, and we wish to assist with setting them on their path towards a career in IT. In some instances, the stereotyping of women by organisations within a primarily male-dominated industry presents a major hurdle for females, so many women may be discouraged both from studying and working in IT”, he says.
For many of the Black women and entrepreneurs trying to break into the South African ICT market, gaining access to the required business skills and resources could be the make-or-break for their ICT careers. Stollard aims to change this. “The Boston Education Trust is offering 20 bursaries in IT with applications now open, to start their studies in February 2019,” he says.
The Boston Education Trust is offering 20 bursaries to South African Black females who register for an IT Diploma at Boston City Campus & Business College. The Trust will pay the tuition fees of those selected for the bursaries.
1. To be considered for a bursary, you must be:
c. South African
d. Under the age of 35
2. The Trustees of the Boston Education Trust will choose the recipients of the bursaries based on criteria such as academic results and financial need.
How To Apply
1. Apply for a Boston City Campus & Business College IT Diploma online at www.boston.co.za.
2. If your application is successful, you can apply for a bursary by sending an email and attaching your letter of acceptance together with your ID and preferred Boston campus (there are 45 nationwide) to email@example.com with the words “BOSTON EDUCATION TRUST” in the subject line.
3. The closing date for bursary applications is 15 February 2019, before 17h00 (to be in time, please allow 2 working days for your application to register for the IT Diploma to be processed.)
For more information visit www.boston.co.za