Department of Higher Education, Research, Science and Technology (DHERST) secretary, Fr Jan Czuba, said the Higher Education Loan Program (HELP) will come into being, whilst at the same time they are working on a program of digitalisation that will ultimately see the introduction of i-Libraries to all higher education institutions.
“The highly successful National Online Application System enters its third year and will continue to be refined,” Fr Jan said while welcoming all post-secondary students who are either being admitted to, or returning to, Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) around the country.
DHERST would like to reconfirm the Government’s position that TESAS will remain in place and be awarded to students in recognition of their academic excellence and achievement. TESAS, however, covers only a portion of total cost.
“TESAS students will therefore be eligible to apply for HELP to cover the gap in the total cost of their higher education. Students with TESAS choosing to take out a HELP loan will repay the HELP component and not the TESAS Scholarship component.
“Government is, however, determined that the majority of students who, for different reasons, are missing out on TESAS and cannot afford to pay their tuition fees will have the option of seeking financial assistance from the HELP loan scheme.
“A letter from my office has been sent to all HEIs in Papua New Guinea, including universities, requesting that all selected students should be enrolled and registered for the Academic Year 2020,” continued Fr Jan.
“Students who cannot afford to pay tuition fees are invited to make a formal declaration at their HEI that they wish to seek financial assistance from HELP and, therefore, should be enrolled and registered.
“HELP will commence as soon as possible during this academic year. It is a complex, long-term, investment in the higher education sector, a major financial undertaking that will be professionally designed and implemented in such a way to maximise benefit to our Nation whilst reducing and minimising risk to the State.
“We are looking forward to a productive partnership with all HEIs to ensure that our students can achieve their highest potential. Our staff of qualified professional educators is committed to providing our students with a wide range of opportunities both inside and outside the classroom to ensure high calibre, quality learning.”