GEORGE NEWS - The third week of the 2020 academic year is generally a very busy time countrywide and comes with many challenges, says Nelson Mandela University George Campus spokesperson Milisa Piko.
Funding presents one of the biggest challenges, as a number of processes are directly linked to it, including registration, residence placement and disbursement of allowances.
Staff are working hard to smooth out procedures but, as in the past, dissatisfaction has arisen around accommodation. Some students claim they were kicked out of residences as their accommodation allowances have been blocked by the financial aid office on campus.
Piko explains that temporary student housing on the George campus was granted to some unregistered students who arrived on campus without funding or a place to stay.
"This is a temporary arrangement, as registered students admitted to residences would need to take up their rooms. As students are registered, they are placed accordingly, and the temporarily accommodated students are advised on alternative accommodation."
The student housing office, however, does try to assist students with alternative temporary accommodation until their funding issues are sorted. She says with both registered and unregistered students now on campus to attend lectures, accommodation is a challenge.
There are various reasons why some students are having difficulty accessing their allowances.
"While students may have been approved for funding from the National Students Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS), there is still a verification process that needs to be carried out before they can be cleared for registration, after which NSFAS releases allowances," she says. "The university's financial aid office is in constant liaison with NSFAS in a bid to iron out challenges experienced by students."
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