Oppenheimer Memorial Trust launch honours scholarships at SPU

The Oppenheimer Memorial Trust (OMT) awarded prestigious scholarships to select students pursuing an Honours Degree at Sol Plaatje University (SPU). The Trust generously donated R4 million in scholarships to SPU honours students with a proven record of excellence. This substantial contribution underscores the commitment of the Oppenheimer family to education and development in South Africa, particularly in academia, research and related fields.

The launch event held recently, was graced by notable figures from OMT which included Ms Rebecca Oppenheimer, Chairperson of OMT, Ms Tracey Webster, CEO of OMT as well as Ms Bailey Corder, Operations Manager at OMT.

SPU Vice-Chancellor Prof Andrew Crouch highlighted this as an historic event, thanking the Trust for its commitment to nurturing future leaders. “Today is a historical day for SPU as well as the Oppenheimer Trust since the two have a close association with Kimberley and the broader Northern Cape through De Beers. I was a recipient of the OMT scholarship in 1989 through which I was afforded an opportunity to study abroad for 6 months. I extend my gratitude to OMT. I know we will not disappoint you.”

Ms Rebecca Oppenheimer, Chairperson of the Oppenheimer Memorial Trust (OMT) and granddaughter of Harry and Bridget Oppenheimer, highlighted the significance of education to her grandfather and the reason he established the Oppenheimer Memorial Trust (OMT) in honour of Sir Ernest Oppenheimer, his father. “My grandfather founded the OMT due to his profound love and passion for education and his belief in its power to transform the course of one’s life. OMT Scholarships for postgraduate studies are awarded on a merit-basis to South African nationals who intend to read for higher degrees at Master’s or Doctoral level or pursue Postdoctoral study at public universities in South Africa. I feel honoured to launch this here and continue the legacy of my family, we love your drive and commitment,” she stated.

Tracey Webster, CEO of OMT, provided an overview of the Trust’s significant work and its founding principles. “The OMT has a long-standing tradition of investing in education, public interest initiatives and other philanthropic causes. She told students the Trust is dedicated to supporting them, with the goal of empowering them to disseminate knowledge and bring a positive difference to South African society and across the globe. “The Trust makes grants to public benefit organisations and institutions, principally in the education sector. It also supports the arts and a range of civil society organisations engaged in policy research and advocacy work. Thank you, Vice-Chancellor, for nurturing these bright minds, they are the future, our hope,” she said.

Katelin Thomas, Jared Salo, Mpho Mahlangu, Content Tertia and Phaki Mcebisi, who are all recipients of the Oppenheimer Memorial Trust Scholarship, conveyed heartfelt appreciation to the trust for its invaluable support towards their future. They aim to show their gratitude for this life-changing opportunity through their academic journeys.

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