Funding the future through BBD’s Bursary & Beyond Programme

Sep 8th, 2021

The greatest challenge facing South African youth today is unemployment. In the first quarter of 2021, the country recorded a 46.3% unemployment rate among youth aged 15 to 34: the highest in the world (Stats SA, 2021). Speaking to this, BBD executive, Precious Nkomo explains: “The unemployment crisis among our youth can largely be attributed to historical inequalities, a poor economy and cycle of poverty, exacerbated by a lack of education and a reduced skills pool”.

Looking to the future, however, as key players across the South African landscape give youth the right boost and activate more potential and sustainable job opportunities, economic prosperity and growth will surely follow suit.

Contributing to the solution

The reality is of course, that South Africa’s future and potential growth depends on its youth, and even more so that this large portion of society is able to embrace and are granted the opportunity to expand their skills in technology. An undertaking of this nature is urgent, and one that the education, public and private sectors all have a significant role to play in.

For business, this means taking active steps to increase the skills pool and to encourage more young people to become active economic participators, whether through employment opportunities or initiatives that boost employability prospects. By so doing, businesses can contribute significantly to building a pipeline of young talent to drive large-scale growth and advancement for the economy and country at large.

Speaking to BBD’s investments in this regard, Nkomo adds: “Doing our bit to empower our youth with digital skills is not only beneficial for our business but is vital to making a difference externally as well. That’s why we offer learnerships and internships and have implemented a highly effective bursary programme”.

BBD’s Bursary & Beyond Programme

BBD is passionate about technology and is committed to doing its part to promote social development and a thriving and inclusive technology sector. While faced with many challenges, one of the largest barriers to education for many young South Africans is a lack of funding, with the combined cost of education, travel, residence fees, textbooks and other expenses being prohibitive. One such way that BBD is working to empower South Africa’s youth, expand the country’s skills pool and create opportunities for employment is through their Bursary & Beyond Programme, a funding programme geared to help grow talented university students who are pursuing a career in software development.

Not only does the bursary contribute financially to the overall cost of tuition fees, but exposes students to fun projects, as well as grants them full access to learn from BBD’s Research & Development team. “Having our bursars work with and have access to industry insights from our in-house experts also goes a long way in bridging the significant gap and skills mismatch between what schools are producing, and what the industry needs” says Nkomo.

To really get their hands dirty, bursars participate in Vac Week, a week-long workshop where they get to play with the latest and greatest in tech, meet and work with inspiring, like-minded individuals and build friendships with other talented students soon to start their careers.

Where to from here?

As encompassed by ‘beyond’, BBD’s Bursary & Beyond Programme aims to see out the full cycle, ensuring a seamless transition from student to working professional.

Once the bursars have completed their studies, they then join BBD’s year-long Graduate Programme as junior software engineers where they work in client project teams. During this year, they are given the opportunity to get hands-on training through BBD’s unique gamified continuous learning programme, the Hero’s Journey to conquer new technologies, sharpen existing skills and see their full career ambitions come to life.

The benefits of such a programme abound adds Nkomo; “Not only are we attracting and cultivating employees with the skills we’re looking for at BBD, we are actively playing a part in collapsing the digital divide by offering opportunities to people who are bursting with potential, but who may otherwise not have been offered the opportunity to harness it”.

Looking to join BBD’s Bursary & Beyond Programme or know someone who might be a great fit? Find out more and apply for the Programme at

Click here to find out more about BBD

Unpacking the 6 cloud migration strategies

Aug 30th, 2021

In this series, we’re breaking down the migration journey to make moving to the cloud even easier than it already is.

Read More

Addressing the elephant in the room

Aug 27th, 2021

Female representation in the IT sector is no longer a taboo subject reserved only for male-dominated conversations, and while previously and consistently questioned, women have proven their capabilities time and time again, and more than earned their seat at the table.

Read More

The tech exposure you need for your big career break with BBD’s Graduate Programme

Aug 19th, 2021

Making the jump from student to professional is jarring enough without having to keep up with the fast-paced IT industry you’re passionate about.

Read More

So you want to migrate to the cloud?

Jul 30th, 2021

It seems nearly impossible to avoid the cloud as a business these days, and for many companies, the benefits cloud computing offers are just too great to ignore for much longer. Because of these you’ve already taken the first step and made the decision – you want to migrate to the cloud. But now what?

Read More

Migrating to a simplified serverless cloud solution

Jul 12th, 2021

Modernising your entire cloud architecture can often sound like a daunting task. In many cases this type of migration would be avoided due to the complexity and possible risks involved if not done correctly.

Read More

The importance of APIs

Jul 2nd, 2021

Everyone wants to save time and money. Organisations are constantly on the lookout for better and faster ways to deliver increased functionality into their business and to their customers. What better way of achieving this than re-using existing solutions that work wherever possible?

Read More

Keeping your head above data: A guide to the shifting role of the business analyst

Jun 17th, 2021

Over the last four decades, the role of the business analyst has undergone its fair share of incremental changes. As we begin to see major shifts happen in both business and technology as a result of data being used to derive business value, the role is set to change yet again.

Read More

Revolutionising chronic medication delivery in public healthcare with smart lockers

May 26th, 2021

A major issue in South Africa is the long queues at public hospital pharmacies. Many patients who rely on public healthcare have to regularly take a day off work to collect their chronic medicines. Through Right ePharmacy, in conjunction with the Department of Health and BBD, an innovative approach using electronic smart lockers is now offered.

Read More

BBD joins the AWS Microsoft on EC2 Service Delivery Program

May 19th, 2021

BBD is proud to have achieved Amazon EC2 for Microsoft Windows Server Delivery Partner status. The program is designed to technically validate AWS Partners that have a deep understanding of AWS services, demonstrated experience and proven customer success in delivering these services to clients.

Read More