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Sigh of relief for VOC Bursary recipients

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It was a sigh of relief for the 22 aspiring students who received bursaries in the 2015 VOC Bursary Project handed over at Burnley Lodge on Wednesday night. The students, most of them first years, are studying in a range of fields – from Biotechnology and law, to dentistry and Islamic studies. Every year VOC selects a group of hard working learners and provides a financial contribution to their studies, as part of the station’s annual community social investment programme.

The 22 recipients are:
Ganief Ebrahim – B Ed (STLBSCH)
Luqmaan Adamson – MbCHb (UCT)
Nuruyah Isaacs – B Ed (UWC)
Zakiyyah Brown – Engineering (UCT)
Rafeeqah Ebrahim – B Sc Biotechnology (UWC)
Raadhiyah Ismail – BA (UWC)
Rifqua Arendse – Dentistry (UWC)
Ilhaam Lalla – LLB (UWC)
Yumna Moosa – LLB (UWC
Asheeqa Adams – Events Management (CPUT)
Nabeelah Achmat – Environmental Man. (CPUT)
Zakiyah Ebrahim – Masters Media (UCT)
Aaqeelah Floris – Journalism (CPUT)
Moegamat Zaid Cassiem – BA Islamic Studies (IPSA)
Abdoel Maalik Mohamed – BA Islamic Studies (IPSA)
Kauthar Adams – BA Islamic Studies (IPSA)
Wafeeqah Karriem – BA Islamic Studies (IPSA)
Kauthar Antar – BA Islamic Studies (IPSA)
Waseema Mackrow – F BA Islamic Studies (IPSA)
Ulfa Morton – B Ed (CPUT)
Waajidah Arnold – B Sc Radiography (CPUT)
Ra’eesa Bastra – Bus Sc (UCT)

Islamic Peace University (IPSA) scholar Mogammad Zaid Cassiem, in his second year of Islamic Studies, expressed gratitude to the bursary panellists for their efforts.

“I am very honoured and grateful for being chosen as part of this year’s group. I know it must have been tough for the panel to choose the students, as there were many potential candidates. Alhamdullilah, I’m very fortunate. Thank you to VOC and everyone involved to allowing us this opportunity so that we can give back to the community.”

Cassiem has plans to further his studies in teaching, “to enrich the community” in Islamic and secular education.

Fellow IPSA student, Waseema Mackrow, who is in her third year, aims to become an educator in Islamic Studies. She hopes to major in Quranic recitation.

An elated Rafeeqah Ebrahim, a UWC Biotechnology student, said the bursary would be a weight off her parent’s shoulders.

“It’s such a great feeling. I know many students applied and only a handful got selected,” said Ebrahim, who plans to continue with her Honours degree to specialise in forensics or medical biotechnology.

UCT first year student Luqmaan Adamson is working towards a Bachelor of Science degree, majoring in human anatomy and physiology and applied biology. When asked about the huge transition to university, he had some good advice.

“Work hard and have a balanced life. It takes time to settle in to university.”

VOC's Nur Morton and Rashaad Frydie from the VOC management board
VOC’s Nur Morton and Rashaad Frydie from the VOC management board

VOC Bursary Fund coordinator Nijemah Hayat said it was “daunting task” narrowing down the recipients. She expressed her gratitude to the independent bursary panel, Kashief Marcuss, Gasant Emeran, Husain Emeran and Imam Edries Mohammed for carefully perusing each application before making the final cut.

“It’s not about taking the cream of the crop. We look at their financial situation and their academic record…it’s about how they motivate themselves and determine their career goals. It becomes quite tough for the panel to choose the final recipients. “

From awarding only six students during the project’s inception, VOC’s Bursary Fund has grown in stature over the years, thanks to the community’s support. This year, the South African National Zakah Fund (Sanzaf) made a sizeable donation with R85 000, Auric Auto in Claremont contributed R36 000 from its Cycle for Charity initiative and Ommiedraai running club sponsored R10 000.

“If it hadn’t been for our sponsors, we would not be able to increase the number of recipients. We also have to thank our listeners who contributed on a monthly basis into the bursary account. We continue to urge the community, organizations and business to contribute so we can hand out more bursaries,” said Hayat.

She added: “We therefore urge the VOC listeners to support the Golden Hour Luncheon on 11th April and the festival in May. The money raised at these events goes towards the running of the station as well as the VOC Bursary Fund.”

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Unsuccessful candidates should not be despondent, as they can apply again when the applications for bursaries for 2016 open in October this year. However, members of the public can contribute to the fund throughout the year through a bank stop order.

The account details are as follows:
FNB
Acc : Muslim Broadcasting Corporation
Woodstock
Branch Code:201909
Acc No: 50261166860


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