The minister of state for higher education Mr Chrysostom Muyingo has appealed to students who face financial challenges to utilize the students’ loan scheme so as to enable them continue with their studies without fail.
However, the minister notes that a number of students end up missing out on the different application phases because they apply late. He also adds that some are not honest with the information they give out thus are left out.
“Others don’t give the required materials or information about themselves, some of them are not honest, I would like to tell students who are financially challenged that the government is there for you, just do it in time and provide correct information,” Mr Muyingo said.
In September last year, about 1,149 students, had missed out on tuition loans, but on appealing to government, more 97 were given a chance.
A total of about 1,851 students were successful at the first attempt, but about 80 dropped off after benefiting from other scholarship schemes such as the State House scholarship, MasterCard Foundation Scholarship, and other government scholarships.
The current number of students benefitting from the student loans scheme for the academic year 2019/20 was put at 1,868. The list of the beneficiaries was released by Mr Muyingo last year in September.
Out of the 7,310 that had applied, 1,834 were selected for the sponsorship, representing a success rate of 23 per cent of the applications received, with 1,216 (66 per cent) being male, while 618 (34 per cent) are female. Of these, 1,464 are undertaking undergraduate degree programmes and 370 diploma studies.
Every financial year since 2014, government puts aside Shs5 billion for loans to support students who qualify for science courses but lack funding to join institutions of higher learning.
However, the number of applicants for the loans has been increasing with each passing year.
The board is in the process of recovering loans from 1,700 students, who have since completed their studies, with their one-year grace period lapsing.
The money is recovered in phases from the time the beneficiary gets a job.