Hi everyone, if you happen to be on this page and reading this, I would like to express my sincerest gratitude and hope you will read till the very end, thank you.
My name is Kuselo and I am from the Eastern Cape, South Africa. I am the middle child of 3 and have recently pursued a one year masters at the University of Cape Town. Prior to this, I graduated from a 4 year Undergraduate degree (with Honours) at the University of Pretoria, with distinction (or first class pass). Throughout my years at University, I always spoke about my desire to do a Postgraduate degree abroad and how it would be a dream come true. I feel that studying abroad would be a great opportunity for me not just to learn from the best academics but also to grow and get exposed to a wider variety of different cultures than those I am used to in my home country. And so, in pursuit of this dream, I worked hard to obtain the marks required to get unconditional acceptance to a university of my choice. I have now recently been offered an Unconditional offer to pursue PhD studies at the University Of Leicester, England (UK). This is for the academic year commencing in September 2019.
My proposed research is in the field of AI & Machine Learning and will use data driven models to minimise the risks associated with the foreign exchange market.
However, due to my own as well as my parents’ financial position my dream of studying abroad has now been put in jeopardy. We cannot afford the school fees, let alone flights to the UK and accommodation and living costs. Despite all the financial obligations for our household, my parents have still been able to put me this far and I am grateful for that. However, I fear that the required tuition amount of £14900 & another £9135 for student residence & other expenses (approximately R454260 in total) is one step too far for them. In an attempt to find funding for my dream, I have looked for external funding but have found that most are closed for their 2019/2020 intake (e.g. NRF, Chevening and Commonwealth Scholarships). Despite my failure in successfully obtaining funding at short notice from the university, I am still vigorously seeking funding.
Furthermore, my Visa application requires me to be able to show that I have a significant amount of the tuition funds or else my application will be revoked.
It is with trembling hands that I draft this post, bearing my heart and its deepest desires out on such a public platform. I have struggled greatly with the idea of even doing this, asking myself – why should people care? What would people think? Is my problem that important in comparison to others? But then I think to myself, sometimes it takes a village to help a child succeed.
I have come so far and worked so hard to be here. Many around me have built me up to this point and I have applied myself to every challenge life has thrown at me – I have never stopped believing in myself and giving my best. I know that when you want something with all your heart and give your absolute best to achieve it, the universe surely will conspire with you one way or another.
And so to my family and friends thank you so much for your support: it means so much to me.
Thank you very much for making it to the very end of my post. Any contribution will be appreciated and may God bless you in your future endeavours.