The Barn Khayelitsha incubator has announced a partnership with South Africa’s leading online education provider GetSmarter aimed at boosting entrepreneurship in the Khayelitsha and Mitchells Plain areas by incentivising top achievers to continue their studies.
Through the partnership, the most impressive graduates from the Bandwidth Barn’s business development and support programmes will have the opportunity to further their studies by means of a University of Cape Town (UCT) short course certificate through GetSmarter.
GetSmarter offers a portfolio of over 55 online short courses to working professionals in partnership with UCT and other leading African universities, and has sponsored 20 UCT short courses to the value of over ZAR200,000 (US$14,000) for top students graduating out of the Barn Khayelitsha.
“We are excited to offer these courses to students who have worked hard to achieve the best results for themselves and their future. We hugely admire the work CiTi is doing and look forward to seeing this partnership help effect change and drive entrepreneurship in a community that really needs it,” said Rob Paddock, chief academic officer at GetSmarter.
Alethea Hagemann, CapaCiTi skills development lead at CiTi, said her organisation valued educational opportunities presented to students through advances in technology.
“GetSmarter has carved out a stellar, pioneering path and we believe that with our successful track record in preparing individuals to be work ready, the strengths of both organisations can be leveraged to address the country’s skills shortage and unemployment rates,” she said.
“The ideas and creative energy coming from entrepreneurs in the greater Khayelitsha and Mitchells Plain corridor need encouragement and support,” said Ian Merrington, chief executive officer (CEO) of CiTi.
“I believe that this collaboration between GetSmarter, UCT and CiTi, geared at fostering local innovation in our community will successfully accelerate these entrepreneurs into becoming sustainable businesses. It also extends our long-running relationship with UCT.”