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As the extended registration period closes, Nelson Mandela University has done its utmost to assist students, who remain unfunded for various reasons, with securing funding and successfully registering before the end of today (13 March).

The University’s Financial Aid office, working closely with the Student Life and Development unit and the Student Representative Council (SRC) has been working towards the conclusion of students’ National Students Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) appeals in a bid to have those whose appeals were successful granted, funding statuses.

Work to iron out, as far as possible, the remaining student challenges is ongoing, as the academic programme continues this term.


As at this at this morning, 13 March, a total of 28 578 students had successfully registered, which is 2.4% up from this time last year and 8.7% higher compared to the same period in 2018.

Since Friday, 28 February, which was originally set date for the close of registration, 1 032 students have registered.

Of the total registered, 8 212 are first years, with 5 772 of those being first-time entering students.

Financial Aid:

NSFAS funding statuses have been granted to 17 824 students, with allowances having been paid out to 13 873 NSFAS-funded students.

The Financial Aid office recorded about 1 900 NSFAS appeals, with 603 of those having been approved and given tuition and accommodation funding statuses. Payment of allowances to these students is in progress and set for completion today (13 March).

The funding appeals committee is hard at work, in liaison with NSFAS, to finalise the remaining 1 300 appeals.

More than 500 students were admitted to Mandela University through government’s Central Application Clearing House’s (CACH) late applications platform. Of those, 259 have been granted NSFAS funding, enabling them to successfully register.

NSFAS N+2 rule

The Financial Aid office received a list of students deemed to have exceeded the financial aid scheme’s N+2 rule. The NSFAS N+2 rule means that qualifying students are funded for the number of years it takes to complete the approved courses, plus an additional two years, and ceases to fund a student for longer than this period.

The office is in liaison with NSFAS to sort out identified errors, where about 270 students have been erroneously placed on the “N+2 exceeded” list. So far, only eight students who were listed as having exceeded the funding period have had their funding reinstated. Financial Aid is awaiting updated lists from NSFAS.

University concessions:

The University received a total 4 601 applications for institutional funding concessions. A large number of the applications were withdrawn as those students received NSFAS funding, leaving 2 785 students approved for University concessions.

SRC #MyMandela fund

The SRC is also looking at the extent of funding needed in order to help students who have not been successful in securing funding. The student body is exploring the possibility of assisting academically deserving, unfunded students through funds pledged towards student challenges.

Student Housing:

On-campus residences are filled to capacity, with 2 869 beds occupied. Of those, 296 are occupied by students who have not yet registered, with the hope of having their funding issues sorted by the end of today.

As at this morning, more than 10 600 beds were accredited off-campus. The Student Housing office will assess a further 75 properties should there be an increased demand.

Student transport:

The University’s shuttle service is operating effectively, with enough vehicles to meet the demand. Students are urged to read shuttle schedules carefully, as transport runs at set times and routes.


As evidenced by the increase in registration numbers and decline in the number of students who remain unfunded, Nelson Mandela University, through ongoing engagement with student leadership, has made a concerted effort to widening access to academically deserving students.

The door remains open for continuous engagement with student leaders, with the aim of responding to any student issues as they 

Contact information
Ms Zandile Mbabela
Media Manager
Tel: 0415042777