WSU accreditation: a massive boost for the Eastern Cape
Mthatha, Thursday 18 October 2018 – As the poorest of South Africa’s nine provinces, many believe which opportunities for economic growth from the Eastern Cape are rare. The Government has been very vocal about the fact which the only way to change This specific is actually to improve the standard of education from the province in addition to therefore minimise the impact of the triple challenges of poverty, unemployment in addition to inequality on the province. the idea is actually probable which the accreditation recently granted by the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA) to Walter Sisulu University’s BCompt (Accounting Sciences) degree will go a long way towards doing just which.
There was joy in Mthatha today as students, academics, members of the chartered accountancy profession, government officials in addition to VIP guests gathered at Walter Sisulu University’s (WSU) Great Hall to celebrate the accreditation of the university’s BCompt (Accounting Sciences) undergraduate degree by SAICA.
Speaking at the celebratory event, Ms Chantyl Mulder, SAICA’s Executive Director: Nation Building, expressed her pride in addition to excitement as well as the chartered accountancy profession’s satisfaction at the institution’s achievement, in addition to congratulated the team who made WSU’s accreditation possible through collaboration, partnership in addition to hard work.
‘SAICA’s expectation is actually which, on average, the idea takes between 5 in addition to seven years of hard work, funding, partnership in addition to commitment by top leadership all the way down to students for a historically disadvantaged institution (HDI) like WSU to acquire in addition to develop the necessary resources to deliver a quality undergraduate degree meeting the SAICA accreditation review process. By achieving This specific in just 5 years, the WSU accreditation partners have done an outstanding job of collaboration towards the betterment of our youth.’
In particular, she praised the collaboration with the University of Cape Town (UCT): ‘WSU’s undergraduate degree accreditation would likely not have been possible without the partnership entered into between UCT in addition to WSU to provide the appropriate capacity-building support in addition to development of staff. Staff by both universities must be congratulated on This specific achievement, as the idea is actually a direct result of their willingness to collaborate in addition to learn by one another which accreditation has been achieved.’
the idea is actually also worth noting which projects like these do not come cheap, Mulder added. She thanked the National Skills Foundation (NSF) for their continued financial support in generating WSU’s journey to accreditation possible.
Mulder says: ‘When This specific project began in 2012 the idea supported 125 students. To date, the project has funded 725 students as a direct result of This specific initiative. As of 2018, two cohorts of students have reached the final year of This specific four-year degree in addition to graduated successfully. With an overall view pass rate (across all four years) of 75%, the project has contributed significantly towards skills development from the province.’
Her sentiments were echoed by Professor Rob Midgley, WSU Vice-Chancellor. ‘This specific accreditation is actually a significant achievement for WSU because the idea demonstrates the excellence which is actually within our staff members. This specific accreditation was very laborious in addition to lengthy nevertheless we achieved the high standards set by SAICA in addition to attained accreditation.’
The Eastern Cape MEC for Sport, Recreation, Arts in addition to Culture, Bulelwa Tunyiswa applauded SAICA in addition to its strategic partners for their commitment to support the Government in achieving the country’s growth in addition to development goals: ‘The provincial government expresses its gratitude to all the partners responsible for generating the SAICA accreditation of Walter Sisulu University’s BCompt (Accounting Sciences) degree possible. We pledge which the people of This specific province, led by This specific university, will continue to support each various other to make sure which This specific accreditation becomes even more successful generating sure which people who want to be chartered accountants do not have to leave This specific province to pursue their dreams. To the youth, takes This specific opportunity in addition to use the idea wisely.’
The impact of accreditation on the province
According to the terms of WSU’s accreditation status, any student graduating that has a WSU BCompt (Accounting Science) undergraduate degree by 2017 onwards should be eligible to study for their postgraduate degree (known as CTA, or equivalent) without needing to complete a bridging course or programme at another university which offers such SAICA-accredited programmes, provided which they meet the entry requirements of which university.
The benefits of WSU’s accreditation extend far beyond the university in addition to its students.
‘The primary in addition to most important benefit of SAICA accreditation is actually to ensure which there is actually sustainable capacity from the rural communities of South Africa to provide the same quality of education which is actually available from the rest of the country. We are delighted to note which This specific initiative will ensure which aspiring chartered accountants [CAs(SA)] can stay from the Eastern Cape to pursue their qualification instead of migrating to one of the country’s three major economic provinces to look for opportunities. In so doing, we are consistently building a case for skills development in communities which need empowerment.
Mulder adds which, ‘with the accreditation of WSU, 5 of South Africa’s six HDIs have at This specific point achieved accreditation for their undergraduate BCom CA-stream degrees. This specific, in turn, contributes towards the National Development Plan transformation initiatives by increasing the number of black CAs(SA) not only from the Eastern Cape nevertheless also in South Africa.’
The accreditation route
‘The SAICA accreditation process is actually a rigorous in addition to extensive one,’ explains Ms Mandi Olivier, Senior Executive for Professional Development at SAICA. Because of the infrastructure in addition to staffing difficulties which HDIs like WSU face, the idea can also be a long process:
‘In order for a programme to achieve accreditation by SAICA, we undertake a rigorous academic review process to assess whether the university’s specific programme(s) leading to the CA(SA) designation qualification possess the necessary resources (financial in addition to various other) in place to deliver a quality programme.’
She continues: ‘The purpose of the accreditation process is actually to establish which the criteria for an accredited academic programme are being met, in addition to which they also meet the Council of Higher Education’s (CHE) definition of being a “purposeful in addition to structured set of learning experiences which lead to a qualification.” Accreditation by SAICA is actually over in addition to above various other regulatory requirements by the Department of Higher Education in addition to Training which first have to be met by these providers.’
According to Olivier: ‘SAICA seeks to establish whether or not the programme meets the appropriate national in addition to international educational standards of the chartered accountancy [CA(SA)] designation, in addition to ensures the delivery of competent CAs(SA) with relevant skills to the market place. Having undertaken the formal accreditation process, we are satisfied which WSU’s undergraduate degree has the necessary resources to meet the required standards.’
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