NATION

EDITORIAL : Seize Opportunities Through TELS To Study At Tertiary Level And Get Qualifications

It is that time of the year when new students will start enrolling at tertiary institutions around the country. Among them are students who would not be able to privately
05 Jan 2017 12:00
EDITORIAL : Seize Opportunities Through TELS To Study At  Tertiary Level  And Get Qualifications
Editorial

It is that time of the year when new students will start enrolling at tertiary institutions around the country.

Among them are students who would not be able to privately fund their education. This is where the Tertiary Education Loans Scheme steps in.

Granted that TELS is not perfect and students in the past have had to wait a bit longer than expected to get access to their funds but the positives that TELS offers outweighs the negatives.

Leaving politics aside, people need to take advantage of the opportunities this scheme offers.

And, for the naysayers who are saying that students are unnecessarily burdened with loans before they have started work, at least they are getting an opportunity to get an education.

This is better than not having access to tertiary education because of financial difficulties.

Fiji is not the first country in the world that has student loans. Many developed nations have been doing so for decades now.

New Zealand’s student loan system started in 1992 and over the years has undergone a number of policy changes.

In Germany, where parents are required by law to fund education of their children, loans are still available for those who are in financial strife.

Irish commercial banks provide loans to students at zero per cent interest for studies.

These are some examples, to name a few, but other countries have also seen the need to get students responsible for their own education. And, they have done so decades before Fiji did.

The fact is that students will need to go that extra mile to apply for loans. And, being responsible for their loans, will also encourage students to take studies seriously.

Scholarship systems that Fiji previously had, assisted a select few. Those who feel that they should get a scholarship should know that it would be on merit.

The Topper’s Scheme is there for those who have topped the external examinations at secondary level.

But, as we have seen in recent days, TELS really has opened the doors for a lot of Fijian students especially those from rural areas who now have a real shot at making a difference.

 

Jyoti Pratibha

Feedback:  jyotip@fijisun.com.fj

 

 

 

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