A TOTAL of 13,500 government scholarships have been awarded to universities and colleges this year, the Papua New Guinea Department of Higher Education, Research, Science and Technology (DHERST) acting secretary Dr Francis Hualupmomi says.
He told The National that there was an increase of more than 1,000 scholarships this year.
“Generally, there is an increase from more than 11,000 in 2021 to more than 13,000 scholarships awarded by the Government in 2022,” Hualupmomi said. He said the Government had improved in providing more opportunities for students this year.
Hualupmomi said 6,069 first-year students qualified for the tertiary education study assistance Scheme (Tesas) while 6,983 were continuing students and the remaining scholarships would be issued to three institutions – PNG Education Institute, Southern Highlands Teachers College and Chimbu Nursing College based on their results.
He said the remaining students would be under self-sponsor, which they could seek for the higher education loan programme (Help).
Hualupmomi said the programme, implemented by Prime Minister James Marape, would see some post graduates start repaying their loans this year.
“This year we will reap the first dividends of Help through repayment of loans by the postgraduate working class students who completed their studies last year,” he said.
“The dividends will be managed under the higher education endowment fund facility. “This facility will sustain funds for a long term.
“It will be linked to the sovereign wealth fund.”
Hualupmomi added that the priority areas for the department were to invest more in existing infrastructure, staff resource materials and other areas to improve institutions going forward.
He also clarified that for students who had achieved the required grade point average but did not secure a space at a tertiary institution was simply down to the individual institutions and not DHERST as they did not make selections. He said schools considered an applicant’s first choice before their marks.
Hualupmomi explained that if students had the required marks to get into law school but had not put law as their first choice, then they would not be considered ahead of those that had put law as their first choice.
He said tertiary institutions set the criteria for admission and selection and the department only facilitated and coordinated with the institutions.
The National / PNG Education News
Next : Fode Expects To Have 75,000 Enrolments In 2022