Mukhanyo is pulling-out all stops to facilitate the ever growing number of distance learning centres all across the country and beyond. The number is expected to reach a hundred centres with a thousand students within the next few years.
Planning for 100 + 1000
During a three-day Distance Forum for the tutors and administrators of the Distance Learning Support Centres at Mukhanyo’s KwaMhlanga campus in September, Glyn Williams, the distance manager, said that in the past year the number of centres increased by 44% to 78, with some 550 active students. A further eleven centres are being planned and are expected to start within the next few months.
Some centres are small – with four or five students – but some others have many more. In general attendance and participation during classes is high. Most centres have weekly classes, some even more frequently. Quite a number of students are already serving in churches, while upgrading their Bible knowledge and understanding.
The expected growth is not without challenges, such as:
At the Forum the tutors of many centres indicated high praise for Mukhanyo’s distance programme and qualifications. They expressed their commitment and also provided useful information on how to keep on growing.
Our gracious God in heaven is blessing the work and also giving many opportunities for spreading His Word further. We trust He will also make it possible, because while He commands, He also shows the way and provides the means.
“My eyes have opened to the truth”, one student confessed to his tutor. Others have commented to their tutors that they have found the Mukhanyo modules Christ-centred and biblically sound. They also indicated they find the fees affordable, although more support would be appreciated. They are impressed with the high quality curricula and the context that is contextualised for African ministry, and the academic content of the modules is found to be at the right level.
Glyn Williams, the Mukhanyo distance manager, has visited a number of centres in different parts of the country. Various groups of students tell him of the high praise they have for their tutors and their commitment.
According to the tutors, many students have indicated that they would like to continue their studies and start with the BTh degree. However, this is presently only possible at Mukhanyo’s campus in KwaMhlanga and at the Advanced Learning Centres in Johannesburg and Pretoria and at the new Advanced centre starting in Durban in early 2020.
One of the problems which distance students encounter, is a desperate need of resources, especially finances. Distances are also a problem with transport facilities expensive. So Mukhanyo greatly subsidies the programme by keeping student fees as low as possible: for example, module fees (including study guides and other material) for centres outside of South Africa are only R200 per student per module.
Mukhanyo now has distance learning centres in all of South Africa’s provinces, with the exception of the Northern Cape. There are also centres in Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe.