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By 5 June 2020 | Categories: news

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For students, as for businesses and industries, the Coronavirus pandemic, and the resulting lockdown, has been the proverbial spanner thrown into the works. To help students stay on track to successfully complete the 2020 academic year despite not being on campus, Vodacom announced this week that it has partnered with the University of the Witwatersrand (WITS) in Johannesburg to keep students connected to higher learning activities. 

To this end, Vodacom elaborated that it has committed to providing each student with a 30GB data bundle to remain connected and continue their education while they are off-campus.

The recurring data bundle provides WITS students with access to learning sites for up to a maximum of 30 GB per month. Non-Vodacom WITS students were given the option to purchase a R5 Vodacom sim card and then RICA it at any Vodacom-accredited outlet. To receive this data allocation, students needed to update their new Vodacom phone number as part of their student record with the University. As part of the package and agreement with the university, Vodacom agreed to reimburse students for the cost of the sim card with airtime to the value of R5.

The offer is valid from 5 June on a rolling month- to- month basis and is made up of 10GB any time URL data to access specific University sites for e-learning and home study, and 20GB night owl data, valid between 00:00 and 04:59 daily. Data bundles will be allocated to students monthly, with the full amount given on the 1st of each month.

If students deplete their free bundle, they can top up their data by dialling *135# or by visiting MyVodacom app if they are a Top Up or Prepaid customer. Vodacom confirmed that credit card payment options are now available for all data bundle purchases on the MyVodacom app.

“We can all agree that success begins with education. For many students, remote learning is a challenge as they do not have the means to access online learning materials. As remote learning becomes a necessity due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Vodacom Business is proud to partner with WITS to support education and the development of tomorrow’s future business leaders by keeping students connected,” commented William Mzimba, Chief Officer for Vodacom Business.

“WITS University is committed to ensuring that its students can access online teaching and learning through the provision of devices and data. This partnership with Vodacom provides our students with the data required to continue with their education and to move forward with their studies,” added Shirona Patel, the spokesperson for WITS.

Even as the pandemic has certainly slowed the progress in 2020, Vodacom's move asserts that it does not have to stop it entirely. Hopefully when this particular spanner falls out of the works, students, as well as businesses will be ready and able to thrive. “Investing in education and improving connectivity plays a key role in fast-tracking our country into the Fourth Industrial Revolution,” concluded Mzimba. 

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