by Gerrit Bester
Excitement is mounting for George Temba (25), a third-year Motion Picture Production student at the Faculty of Arts and Design, who will be travelling to the United Kingdom later this year for a three-week all-expenses paid trip of England and Scotland as TUT’s Abe Bailey Travel Bursar for 2023. What adds to the suspense is that it will be George’s first time abroad.
The bursary is available to registered full-time students at a South African university as well as academic staff members who enjoy junior lecturer status. The focus of the bursary is leadership development and broadening the views of young South Africans.
The trustees wish the bursaries to be awarded to students who are academically strong and have shown exceptional qualities of leadership and service, with a good track record – not only on a campus level but also in a wider social context.
The Abe Bailey tour programme of 22 days is framed around the following themes: Development of the British political system to its current multiculturalism approach; Understanding British history and culture; Personal leadership and career development; Understanding the British Higher Educational system; and a New perspective on South Africa's place in the world.
The tour will involve different stages, with bursars meeting in Cape Town on 28 November for the first leg. The objective of this time will be for them to be introduced to one another and to fully understand their roles and the expectations of them.
On 1 December they will depart for London, where they will stay at Goodenough College, founded in 1931. This leg of the tour includes several interesting talks and engagements as well as visits to points of interest, such as the House of Parliament and an organ concert at Westminster Abbey.
There will also be a work shadow day. "I look most forward to this day of shadowing at any film or TV production company, studio, or broadcaster of my choice," says George.
George, who hails from Jane Furse in the Limpopo Province, says he decided to study film because he is passionate about storytelling, especially through the mediums of film and television. "It is one of the best ways to tell stories that captivate, inspire and ignite passion in people's lives on a daily basis."
"Apart from entertaining people, filmmaking gives me so much purpose, knowing that I am doing something that has a positive impact on people's lives. I chose to do this course at TUT because it's an institution that produces young, quality professionals who go out there to take over whatever industry they go into. A good example of such a student is Phathutshedzo Makwarela, who graduated from TUT and went on to take over the film and television industry of South Africa by creating great TV shows such as The River, The Legacy, and many more."
Asked what the opportunity means to him, he says, "The top of one mountain is the bottom of the next, so keep climbing."
The 2023 bursars will return to South Africa on 22 December.
The Abe Bailey Travel Bursary was established in terms of the will of Sir Abe Bailey, who died in 1940. These travel bursaries give selected university students and university staff with junior lecturer status the opportunity to visit the United Kingdom.
All bursars become members of the Abe Bailey Fellowship, which comprises past travel bursars since the tour's inception in 1951, now numbering over 900. They are kept in touch by way of the fellowship newsletter and an annual updated address list.
TUT’s 2023 Abe Bailey Travel Bursar is George Temba, a third-year Motion Picture Production student at the Faculty of Arts and Design.