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Amended General B-BBEE Codes of Good Practice

Skills Development



The objective of a bursary is for a recipient to attain a degree. As

I have an inherent passion for Youth development, I find it very

fulfilling when, through my professional role, I am able to match

prospective bursary recipients to bursary sponsors according to

their Economically Active Population (EAP) requirements.The secret

to the success of a bursary recipient and sponsor relationship

is that it must be as seamless as possible. To that end I remove

distractions, such as administration relating to the chosen institution,

for the convenience of the sponsor and recipient.

In a managed setting, the B-BBEE bursary end-to-end process

is fairly straightforward. It can take from six weeks up to several

months to complete, depending on the value of the bursary

and the number of students. It involves specific documentation

and checking student registrations at the Department of Higher

Education and Training institutes throughout South Africa. The

awarding of bursaries takes place on an annual basis.

When a recipient receives a bursary, support is not necessarily

guaranteed to continue the following year, as this will depend

mainly on the student maintaining a good percentage of pass marks, the year of study (under- or post-graduate), as well as

sponsor funding criteria and availability.

Over the past five years, I have managed thousands of bursary

recipient and sponsor relationships. Due to the demanding

aspects of managing these relationships, I often reflect on the

impact a bursary can have on a recipient’s life. I appreciate a

bursary sponsor’s input and commitment when considering

bursary funding and the investment it makes towards the future

employment prospects of a bursary recipient.

To reveal one of the students behind what is referred to as a

‘bursary recipient’ and the organisation referred to as a ‘bursary

sponsor’, I would like to introduce Mikayla Eagles and her bursary

sponsor, Italtile Limited, who have been active members of the

BEE Chamber since 2019. As part of its Skills Development

programme, Italtile awards bursaries annually.

Italtile has been ingrained in the South African economy for

more than five decades. Over this time, Italtile has moved from

importing tiles through its Alberton outlet to being a national

commodity. Over the years, it has embraced the core principles

of a transforming South Africa, as its latest B-BBEE Certificate

showcases a Status Level 2 and 125% Preferential Procurement

Recognition. The Italtile Skills Development bursary scheme is an

investment in people, specifically the Youth.

Twenty-two-year-old Mikayla Eagles is one of Italtile’s bursary

recipients. She was born and raised in Cape Town and is the

middle child with an older brother and younger sister. Her

hardworking parents raised her with a solid value system. Mikayla

enjoys spending time with her friends and family like any young

person. She loves where she lives, as she enjoys spending time

at the ocean and outdoors, allowing her to re-energise and create

a space to think. Sport, specifically competitive swimming, has

played a significant part in her life. It has taught her many lessons

that she applies daily, especially with her studies. Oh yes, she

loves pizza and an occasional dessert.

Mikayla, what led you to apply for a bursary?

In my third year, I applied and received a bursary through the

BEE Chamber, whereby I met the criteria. The bursary allowed

me to focus all my energy on my studies without worrying

about fees. I was relieved that it removed the financial burden

from my parents. What were your most significant challenges

when entering university?

I attended a boarding school, which gave me the tools to be

independent. I had to learn to do things for myself because my

parents were far away. Thus, my independence shaped my

character and personality and gave me the confidence to ‘step up

to the plate’ at university. Although there were character-building

benefits to living away, the transition to university did not come

without challenges. I was not prepared for the increase in my

workload or the expected standard and quality of work. I realised

I did not use the correct study methods, as what worked for me

in high school no longer applied at university. Then there was

navigating the university campus and understanding the lay of the

land, which took time for me to get used to.

As I did not take up university residence, I was allocated a mentor

through a Private Student Organisation, which did not provide me

with adequate support. On reflection, a perfect mentor would have

been a little older than me with experience navigating the university

space. However, the university did offer orientation support to the

new students, which went a long way toward helping me to adjust

and familiarise myself with my new surroundings.

What field of study did you choose and why?

In 2021, I completed a BComm in Industrial Psychology. I am

currently in my fourth year, completing my Honors in Industrial

Psychology. I chose this degree as it combines working with people

and business. I have always enjoyed helping people but never felt

I could be a psychologist. Therefore, choosing to be an Industrial

Psychologist allows me the best of both worlds, as I will work and

help people in a business environment.

I look forward to joining a well-established company

where I can learn and grow through a Psychometric Internship.

How do you see your future job prospects in

South Africa after graduating?

Challenging; the unemployment rate in South Africa remains high,

and many graduates are unemployed. Unfortunately, this puts

me at a disadvantage, as others in my area have job experience.

Coming straight out of university, I will have limited work experience

and certainly none in my field of study. Another challenge is that

employers want job experience, as they are not prepared to invest in

the development of graduates. Do you have any message for Italtile,

your bursary sponsor?

Please accept my heartfelt appreciation and gratitude for your

sponsorship. It gave support when I needed it the most. I hope

that you have felt the rewards of your investment. In providing

a bursary, you enabled a young woman to complete her

undergraduate degree and obtain acceptance into an Honors

programme that only selects 30 people per year, which was no

easy task. Thank you very much again.

Do you have a message for anyone looking

for a bursary to further their studies?

Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Navigating the websites and

juggling all the deadlines during the application process for

different bursaries was quite challenging and overwhelming.

But, in saying that, it became easier to navigate when the

BEE Chamber took over the process on my behalf. My

message is to persevere. There are bursaries, so start

the process early, research and apply for as many


as possible.

Lesley Vaughan the Group Training

Manager at Italtile Limited concludes. “Skills

Development and people are my passion.

I am proud to work for a company who

wants to help deserving students who

otherwise may not be able to afford

higher education and reach their

potential. We take such pride in

knowing we have made a difference

in a student’s life and being able to

give back to the community.”

Bursaries - An Investment in Youth
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