What’s Stopping International Students From Studying In SA?

Any international student studying in South Africa will know just how difficult the journey was to actually be able to sit in a South African lecture room. As the most academically advanced country in the Sub-Saharan region, it comes as no surprise that our country attracts such a large gathering of youths desperate to attain a recognised degree from an internationally esteemed university. There are actually a number of benefits associated with hosting international students, as an increase of students from across the globe helps stretch an academic institution’s influence. But why is South Africa such an incredibly difficult country to study in if you are, indeed, from elsewhere in the world?

1. The Problem Of Visas 

The primary issues faced by international students coming to South Africa are those of visa requirements. Study visas are notoriously difficult to get one’s hands on, and the process is made all the more difficult when foreign embassies often require information that is not necessarily needed by authorities in South Africa. We recommend that all potential international students visit the South African embassy in their own country and find out their strict requirements before following up on additional requirements on the immigration office’s website.

2. The Problem Of Bureaucracy 

This issue is unfortunately all too common. Bureaucracy and the unending paper trail of requirements, documents and visas often means that documents go missing when applying for a student visa. Additionally, there is also the issue of an international student having to make two separate applications whereby he/she is urged to fulfil requests given to them by both the university as well as the state. We insist that students arrange their application with international universities far in advance, giving themselves plenty of time to arrange necessary documents with the host government.

3. Time & Money 

These are two resources that the international student has very little of. Both time and finances are in short supply. A young adult does not often have time to waste when hoping that their student visa application gets approved. Furthermore, ensuring that they have the financial security to be able to afford visa costs, air travel costs and living expenses in a new country makes the task all-the-more difficult.

All three of these stumbling blocks, often experienced by international students coming to South Africa, can be alleviated to a certain degree when working hand-in-hand with the university. Once a university accepts your application there are many people within the institution that may assist students in travelling to South Africa to complete or start their academic degrees.

For more information regarding applications for international students coming to the Vaal University of Technology, take a look at our International Students page. Alternatively, contact the university directly. We’d love to hear from you!