* The youth holds key to achieving Malawi’s long-term development and prosperity goals
* They hold key to achieving Malawi’s long-term development and prosperity goals—Chief Executive Phillip Madinga
Standard Bank Plc has increased its joint merit scholarship fund with Press Trust to K220 million in line with the bank’s commitment to support education as catalyst for sustainable economic development.
Launching the four-year fund at Loyola Jesuits Secondary School in Kasungu, Chief Executive Phillip Madinga said the decision underlines the bank’s belief that empowering the youth — who make up majority of the country’s total population — holds key to achieving Malawi’s long-term development and prosperity goals.
“At Standard Bank, we strongly believe that empowering the youth by investing in their education and vocational skills, will unleash the next economic growth frontier for Malawi, while supporting the nation’s development goals,” he is quoted as saying in a statement.
Madinga further said the bank resolved to renew its funding towards the scholarship after being encouraged by positive outcomes of the first phase, which produced a 100% pass rate for MSCE with 75% of the students scoring points less than 20 points.
He noted that the most impressive result is that of Gloria Ndipo from Providence Girls Secondary School, who scored 8 points and aspires to study Medicine.
“Bearing in mind the positive outcomes of this scholarship fund, we at Standard Bank have seen it fit to renew our agreement with Press Trust,” he said. “Through a memorandum of understanding signed today, we pledge to forge ahead with our joint financing interventions in education,” Madinga said.
Press Trustee, Professor Moses Maliro urged the scholarship beneficiaries to make full use of the the opportunity by excelling in their studies, saying: “We have decided to invest in you, based on capabilities that you showed during the PLCE.
“We hope that you will maintain your excellent academic performance throughout secondary education. It is our hope that you will be part of the critical human capital mass that Malawi requires to fulfill its 2063 aspiration in developing the economy inclusively.”
Ministry of Education Principal Secretary-basic education, Dr. Rachel Chimbwete-Phiri commended Standard Bank and Press Trust for renewing the fund describing it as a powerful medium for promoting access to equitable education for deserving students.
“We express our sincere gratitude to Press Trust and Standard Bank for rescuing our students, many of whom need financial support. The gap and need for financial assistance is really huge,” she said.
The initial fund of K120 million runs up to 2023, while the new package of K220 million or an increase by 88% will run up to 2027 catering for 46 students from across the country’s secondary school, including those with special needs.
The scholarship fund is inclusive of tuition, stationary, school shoes and uniform, school bags and examination fees.
Apart from the scholarship fund for secondary schools, Standard Bank and Press Trust have also partnered to provide tuition and learning materials for four years for students at the Malawi University of Science and Technology (MUST), Maula Prison School and other schools that were hit by tropical Cyclone Freddy in 2023.