I'm despondent

I’m Varsity hunting for my eldest for next year, and by gods, Karma and good Faeries, what an emotional battle it is for me… :-[

He’s an average student, no distinctions for him, but he is studious and gets fair marks, his big aspiration is to become a CA, but damn, although this mother will never say it to him, I have my doubts about whether he is going to manage to achieve that particular dream, the entrance requirements are stringent, and places limited and it states on all the sites that since it is a specialised field, they will select only the best… which leaves my boy far behind.

I’m chewing on the Unisa route, and to enrol him at one of the Boston colleges instead. I know nothing about them though, and whether the quality of education (oh the irony), is acceptable. Does anybody know anything about the Boston colleges offering the Unisa degrees?

since i (literally) wrote the book about it.

ACCOUNTANT An Accountant is there to ensure that a company's books are in order. That means, that all financial transactions are correct, and that the taxes are paid correctly according to the records that the company keeps. The majority of an Accountant's time is taken up by entering tranactions into the financial books, like sales, payments, credits and debits. It's a job that demands attention and concentration, as each entry needs to be accurate, so that the accounts balance at the end of the month. So attention to detial is very improtant. Part of the Accountant's job is too allso keep record of all assets, liabilites and monies, and prepare reports to indicate the company's financial health, and help the owner to make informed decisions. Accounts usually starts off as an assistant in the Account Department, but through training and studies, you can grow and expand, to qualify as a Chartered Accountant, Cost Accountant in the Building sector, Tax Specialist or Auditor. Every single company needs a bookkeeper of some kind. From the smallest corner shop, to the biggest corporation. The demands of the career are universal, and there are no specific variations within the different industries. Many accountants choose to work privately, doing the books of several smaller business. You will have to be relatively computer literate, as very few businesses do their books manually anymore. Being an accountant is a lonely job, as you spend your days doing concentration intensive work, and the environment needs to be quiet and free of disturbance. The accountant needs to be good with figures and match, be very honest and trustworthy, and work with precise detial.

Requirements: Senior certificate needed for Tertiary Studies, but many bookkeepers receive on-the-job training while occupying lower positions such as PA or secretary.
School subjects needed is Mathematics and Accounting, Business science and economics can be helpful too.
Training and studies are often part theoretical, and part practical, and depending on the Institution of study you choose, you can do 1-2 year Accounting courses, or study for 5 years to become Chartered Accountants. You can work and study part time as well.
All Universities and Technicons, and a lot of Colleges and Private Institutions offer varying degrees of training, from the basic bookkeeping in Colleges, to Chartered Accountant Degree at University.

Boston is more, as I can figure it, a media related study institution. Unisa would be difficult, coz there are no classes to attend. And with this stuff, i would imagine, it would be a good idea to attend classes.
other institutions to consider:
Exercise Training Academy (eta) - www.exerciseacademy.com/
Johannesburg - 011 791 6565, [email protected]

College SA - www.collegesa.co.za/.
Pretoria - 0800 21 23 22, [email protected]

The Skills Academy - www.skillsacademy.co.za.
Pretoria - 0801 21 23 22, [email protected]

Damelin - 031 2519300, www.damelin.webhouse.co.za
Boksburg - (011) 878 5800, [email protected]

Varsity College, http://www.varsitycollege.co.za/
Sandton - (011) 784 6939, [email protected]

Technicon SA
Johannesburg - (011) 331-2046

Gordon Institute of Business Science
Sandton - (011) 771-4000, [email protected]

Regenesys Business School
Gallo Manor - (011) 603-0501, [email protected]

universities will be the only place that will be able to give him the CA degree. maybe he should consider other fields of accounting, like bookkeeping instead. then he will have better avenues for studying. you should have him assessed to see what he is inclined towards. no point in spending bucks, and he is simply not gifted in that field. what other interrests does he have?

A lot of guys in varsity who got in with top marks will fail quickly and be left emotionally scarred. A lot of smart kids score average in school because school is simply boring and not stimulating. So it went with the people who stuck through with me to the graduation ceremony and beyond… they were average students in school, disinterested in what it had to give. However in university, instead of going from an A student to a F student, they pretty much maintained their average performance from school… I think this is because they were used to working for their grades.

Super serious; It’s a crapshoot who will make it past the 1st year and who won’t. Yes some highly gifted guys stuck around and took the top student awards, but they were also the HARD WORKING highly gifted kids. We were there, we arrived there average, but had the determination to stick it through. Interest and hard work is what you need in varsity, the syllabus is usually too high-grade to be just “sailed through”.

I AM contradicting myself in saying “I had it easy” in varsity (ADD thread) and then saying “hard work will get you through, I was average…”. I was average, my grades in varsity weren’t what they should’ve been, and my major was my LIFE PASSION, so I knew a lot going in, and my courses were mostly re-hashing what I knew… But I knew what I had to do to pass, and that is actually all that matters there. No-one will ask for your marks unless you wanna put “cum laude” on your CV. In fact, in most of my jobs nobody even bothered to check if I could produce an actual degree. Putting it on the CV was enough. I MAY be completely wrong when it comes to CA’s though, they may be more stringent.

If he qualifies (and fuck me you should TRY as hard as your little heart can to get him into the BEST institution you can, do NOT harm his chances before he can even roll the dice… his entire life depends on it), the secret to passing is this… Go to class, take notes, come home, go through it again, read the book, do the work. Go to sleep, tomorrow you do it again. DO NOT GET 1 DAY BEHIND! Your first day of varsity, if you fall behind THAT DAY, you’re screwed. Perhaps his chums will be out partying. But they may fail because of it.

Not to be stupidly obvious or “rub it in” inclined… I’m just sad to note your lack of belief in the guy. What brought me where I am today was my parents’ attitude from day 1: “What is good for the rest of the class simply does not count for you, push harder, do better, you have to believe that you CAN be the best, and when you do something DO IT THE BEST, the class is not your baseline. YOU are your baseline, and you should exceed it. That is the secret to having a job for the rest of your life. Do whatever you like, doesn’t matter, but be the best.”

I am not the best by my own admission. But I strive to be, and that makes me aim so much higher. My perception of average is not what the real average is. And that has made me stand back at times and go: “Whoa, how did I get HERE?!, in all my blindness of chasing greatness I have surpassed all those who were with me, and barely noticed, eye still on the prize”.

That is the greatest gift my parents ever gave me, or my sibling. Pure unqualified unfettered and absolute belief. Don’t do it lip service. Believe it. (Yes I’m channeling the secret but I’ve seen it change people, including myself)

At times some people probably think this makes me an asshole, but I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

Ah, GTG your write up brings back old and deliberately burried memories of debit columns, journals and a Std VI boy driven nuts with boredom. |-O I take my hat off to accountants. They can’t pay these guys enough.

But money ain’t everything, and life’s to short to live in plush agony. Why don’t you bully you’re son into rekindling his interest in science and technology?

Today only offering his 2cents worth at an incredible 50% discount!

Here’s the thing about this particular boy, and a bit about his mother as well. He was diagnosed ADD in Grade one, failed the year, was placed in the Aid class and languished there for two years. In Grade 3, he was placed into a first year teachers class, who had stars in her eyes about clever little children that all did well and she would be the brilliant little teacher, instead she got 6 ex-aid class kids with learning disabilities. She wrote me a letter end first term, explaining to me that my child was “dumb” (she actually used that word), and that she would recommend that he was removed to a remedial school. What got me going though, was the three spelling errors in her letter to me…

I set up a meeting with her, the principal and the department head (a brilliant old teacher who had me as a student MANY MANY years back), and all hell broke loose, with accusations of stupidity abound. I then bought my son into the meeting, and did the cruelest thing I have ever done to anybody. I told him that these people think that he is stupid, and that they wanted him to go to a different school, and I offered him a choice, he can remain and prove them wrong, or he can go. He was 8 years old. He looked the departmental head in the eye and said “Mrs Williams, do YOU think I’m stupid?” She went down to his level and did what only an experienced passionate teacher would do, and she told him that two people in this office did not think it was the truth, and that she and I (his mother) believed that he was brighter than all his classmates put together and that if HE believed it, he could move over to her class and together we can prove them wrong.

He received honours that year and for every year in primary school. But he worked his ass off, and he still does.

I do believe in my child, he is a serious person, and a bit of an introvert (although not shy), he is the type of person that will achieve whatever he puts his mind to, simply because he wants to. I KNOW he can do this, what I dont know, is whether I can get him in at varsity, which is why I’m despondent, its not that I doubt his abilities, he’s proven himself at a very young age, I’m doubting the system allowing him the opportunity.

ah-gods, now I’m all snotty again, bringing up kids aint for sissies.

and by the way, all his ex-aid class friends went to a remedial school on this snotkop teacher’s recommendation.

That echoes the fate of my sibling. Being told he was bound for remedial school by his teacher, the headmaster, and then by an assesment of the dept. of education… They sent some dude to analyze him and he was found to have a learning disability.

My parents fought this tooth and nail, got an independent assessment from a top university, they begged to disagree…

With threats of legal action he was allowed to stay, but he was cut from all contact with said teacher, and flourished.

Today he holds a masters degree. That is why I appeal so hard to you. TRY. Applying doesn’t hurt anything and if he gets in, it’s a hell of an opportunity he could’ve missed. If CA requirements are too high for him to qualify, go for another business degree, something he’ll also like, and convert into a CA later: Industry experience DOES help. My number 1 recommendation is go to a varsity open day and have him just soak in the “feel” of the different departments and courses. Many people have an “AHA!” moment during these.

He’s proved that if you can make it happen, he will come to the party. He sounds unstoppable.

Open day at UJ is the 14th May, we’ll be there, and we’ll certainly try, ditto Wits and ditto Pta. Who knows…

Thanks BM, sometimes one just needs an additional kick up the backside.

thanks GCG, you made effort with those contacts, its appreciated.

and Mintaka, thanks for the discounted 2c worth, its been noted, however, I doubt my son will allow his mother to bully him into anything that has’nt got to do with numbers, although he does have both science and IT as subjects, they’re not favourites.

I used to be the worst student in my high school. My interests included smoking behind the pavilion, not doing homework…ever… and not giving a hoot at any order anyone with authority gave me.

Couple of years after high school I decided I wanted to pursue a science degree. I did not even remotely meet the entrance requirements. So what I did instead was go to the university (prestigious one) and demand to see the Faculty of science Dean, explained what I wanted to do politely but with sense of urgency, also I refused to take a no for an answer hehe. Long story short I got in.

My advice is for your eldest to do something similar, it instills something…a sense of self worth, the promises I made held me, more than the money university costs. Kids don’t know the value believe me 0:). Most importantly send them to do it themselves, no hand holding. Never give up on a dream!

Gods know, I’m not despondent anymore, but damn, I’m frustrated!!!

I’m trying to apply to UJ, we went to the open day (another story for another day, that), got the application forms and was told that the office dont accept cash, only online payments and cheques accepted (who still owns a chequebook???)

Anyway, we plod back home, duly fill in the application forms, get all the necessary (certified) documents together and now we only need to pay the R350 into their bank account after which we can take proof of payment and the file of other docs to the enrolment office, right? Nope, not so right. For the life of me, I’m probably dense, or blind, or something, I cannot find any reference to a bank account either on the application form, the enrolment letter OR THE BLASTED UJ WEBSITE. (and the website proclaims an online application process as well, which is also missing in action).

Freaking hell, I sent the lot an email now, kindly requesting their banking details for the applications.

Right, I’m done ranting. (wtf!!)

University of Johannesburg

Bank name: ABSA

Account number: 28-40189-565

Branch code: 335105

Reference on the deposit slip: Your student number

if UJ is University of Johannesburg that is… from their website :smiley:

Nope, if you read a tad further (next line in fact):

This account is not relevant for application fees. Please see the section on How to Apply, Fees for the correct bank account details when making an application deposit.)

I did come right though, I phoned the call centre and for a change had a well-spoken young lady that managed to assist me with the correct details.

for anybody interested:

Absa Bank Aucklandpark

324 014 1018

Br/cd: 632 005

ID number as reference.

maybe the process of finding the banking details eliminates the dumb-asses and not-so-determined right out of the starting blocks

or alternatively to dissuade any right thinking individual of wanting to enroll their spawn in an institution that cannot get the basics right.

Which I, of course, didn’t do.

This account is not relevant for application fees. Please see the section on How to Apply, Fees for the correct bank account details when making an application deposit.)
A hyperlink right about here would make sense...
I did come right though,
Well done.

Thus the frustration continues…

UJ and WITS didnt accept him, and I’ve been floundering around looking for alternatives. UNISA will take him, but he cannot be registered until he has his Matric certificate in hand, which is due only mid January 2012. In the interim I am looking for institutions that offer diploma courses and the like, and have been hitting brick walls stacked like dominoes. Most of the “big name” colleges e.g. Boston and Damlin, are not registered, nor accredited with the Educational department (believe it or not), and the R30k odd payment you pay Boston for their IT qualification isnt worth the paper its printed on.

So yesterday I hit upon this place:


Sounds great, they’re registered with the correct instances, they offer diploma and degree courses, they’re internationally affiliated (Belgium) and they assist with internships (local and international) after course completion. So I’m keen, and they’ve got space for the lad for next year. Costs for 1st year is around R40k, lots of money, but one can make a plan (sell something iow). However, one thing that really annoyed me… they’re freaking affiliated with the RCC, the whole palava about xtian education continues. The kid’s going to have to suck it up if we decide to go with this. sigh

Has he considered doing a vanilla B.Comm. first? After that he could do a short cut postgrad course to get his CA.

For what it’s worth, I studied at TUKS and it was pretty good (compared to high school, especially - I really didn’t like high school). I’m currently studying through UNISA (and working full time) which is a crap idea. And in my opinion would be even more crap if it was my only experience of tertiary education. No interaction with fellow students. Administrative nightmares. No classes etc (so the theory of ‘pay attention in class and the exams are so much easier’, which worked for me at Tuks, doesn’t apply). My brother’s wife also studied through UNISA, full time (not working) and it took her 5 years to complete her LLB (but thats a whole other story)
If UNISA turns out to be the way to go, I strongly suggest classes at Varsity College or somewhere - my housemate studies there (transport economics) and it really helps him to attend the accounting classes.
Also, don’t be despondent about it - I didn’t get into the course I wanted to with my matric marks either, so applied to study something else with similar subjects, and then after my first semester I had done well enough to convert (no money wasted, no time lost).
Good luck!

Yes, but by the time they declined our initial applications, the deadline has passed, so we’re out of luck for next year with the Varsities at least. It is also the reason we’re now looking at IT instead of accounting/finance. Hell, I’ll be happy with anything legit coming our way at this point of time actually. I’m open to suggestions and opportunities though, shame, the kid as well, he even went to the local Mechanic to ask for an apprenticeship.

Hi Faerie!

I generally only lurk around here, and very rarely feel the need to post anything. However your thread has struck a chord with me because I was in the same position as your son. I also hail from the same area as you guys, and know the schools and types of people there well. In short I sympathise ;D. In all likelihood a secretary took one look at your application and threw it in the bin. It’s their job and we understand, good for them, but we DO NOT have to except that >:D.

I applied to go to Wits a mere 4 years ago; the rules haven’t changed at all and entrance requirements are the same, meaning there’s a time limit on applications and blah blah blah. These “rules” did not stop me from barging in there in the middle of January to apply. I still got in that year; all it took was the will to do so. I urge your son not to give up, at least not until he has gotten thrown out by security.

The Faculty Dean has the power to enrol you anytime before the start of the courses even by only 1 day. Let your son go to him/her mano-a-mano. It is imperative that he go alone. Your presence there will only confirm to them that this is your choice not his, understandable, a mother wants only the best for her son.

Of course I’m assuming your son has the determination to do this, and pull through years of hard work. But in our country and in this climate can he afford not to? Please don’t be despondent, it’s still waaayyyy to early in the fight! You still have LOTS of time!

Just got notification, my son’s been accepted this morning at the Belgium Campus ITversity in Pretoria for a degree course in IT. http://www.belgiumcampus.ac.za/

He scored quite well in the aptitude tests and they’re happy to have him start classes later this month. He’ll just have to swallow the religious undertones and wear the prep-school uniform they require him to wear…