Vice-Chancellor Dr Max Price recently awarded certificates to 16 recipients of the Bathe Leadership Programme, established at UCT in March 2014 through a R11-million gift from Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Professor Klaus-Jürgen Bathe.
Speaking to a 60-strong audience at the November ceremony, programme director Professor Alphose Zingoni outlined the main aims of the scholarship: "The primary goal ... is to produce graduates with outstanding leadership qualities and a strong sense of social justice, who will go on to play leading and significant roles in business, government, industry and civil society in South Africa and on the African continent."
Given current plans, there should be 26 students supported at UCT in 2016. "Looking ahead," Zingoni explained, "the plan is to grow the programme to a level where 30 students are supported at any given time, with scholars being continuously replaced by new ones as they graduate."
Successful candidates are awarded up to R120 000 per year in addition to a six-week internship in the USA, Germany or South Africa, valued at up to R80 000. Undergraduate students across all faculties at UCT are encouraged to apply.
Speaking at the event, Price said, "We see this new programme as being an integral part of the broad strategy for developing leadership qualities of UCT graduates, and enhancing social responsiveness. In the face of challenges like climate change, the widening gap between the rich and the poor, diminishing natural resources and increasing global conflicts, it is clear that the world will need good leaders.
"I have no doubt that this scholarship will become one of the most prestigious and highly sought-after in South Africa, enjoying a status similar to that of the Rhodes scholarships," Price concluded.
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