Helb chief executive officer Charles Ringera has said 4000 students have already applied for loans at the newly unveiled Higher Education Financing (HEF) portal; www.hef.co.ke.
Over 45,000 university students and 42,000 TVET students categorised as vulnerable and extremely needy will be fully funded with government scholarships and loans.
The scholarships and loans will however apply to 2022 KCSE candidates joining universities and TVETs.
Ringera said the government has put appropriate measures to ensure no student will be left out of the funding model.
“We are ready and have organized ourselves in putting appropriate measures for students who want to secure and apply loans at Helb board,” he said on Wednesday night during an interview with Citizen TV.
“As of today evening, 4000 students have already applied for loans, scholarships and bursaries.”
Students only have one month to apply for scholarships and loans.
He assured Kenyans the remaining time will be enough.
“Time is not a problem because we are using a technology known as Artificial Intelligence. So the remaining is enough for us to have processed the application forms from students. We want to assure the Kenyans that the government has prepared itself in terms of finances,” Ringera said.
“After we acquire all the details and get to know how much money will be allocated to each, the government will disburse the funds the first week that students will be expected to report to their respective institutions.”
In the 2023-24 Financial Year Budget, Helb has been allocated Sh30 billion up from Sh15 billion.
During the launch of the portal, Education Cabinet Secretary Ezekiel Machogu said vulnerable students will not be expected to pay anything for the programme cost.
They will also receive upkeep from the loan.
“For the first time, students whose households are at the bottom of the pyramid shall enjoy equal opportunities in accessing university and TVET education through 100 per cent government funding,” Machogu said.