In South Africa students recently united to protest against the rising tuition fees. The result was positive: the tuition fees will not rise in 2016. (1) However, this is only a short term solution. The critical issues surrounding tuition fees and consequently, the accessibility to tertiary education have hereby been highlighted.
I am currently doing a two year Post-Master in the Netherlands. The financial model has been designed in such a way that companies benefit from the knowledge of the students and university while the student benefits from paid tuition and a monthly income. The programme aims to stimulate university and industry interaction.
In the first year, a multidisciplinary team is brought together. The team does projects for clients from the industry. Therefore, the clients pay for the team to collaborate and come up with innovative ideas. The students also follow workshops in each other's fields during this time. The projects, in this case, are directed at Smart Energy Buildings and Cities (also the name of the programme).
In the second year the student goes on to do a one year project in a company using the knowledge which was gained in the first year, as well as that of the university. The company for which the project is done, pays the tuition of the student.
Therefore, this could be a model for the future of funding education. The projects done in university can be done for a company through a group of students. This could be done across disciplines and years of study.
-Collaboration between disciplines and fellow students
-Access to knowledge of the University
-Access to latest research
-Relatively less expensive advice
-Input from multiple sources
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