22 June 2020

Dear UFS NSFAS and Funza Lushaka student,

You have been identified as an eligible student of the University of the Free State (UFS) who will receive a 3-month data-bundle grant, downloaded directly to your mobile device, as provisioned through a grant from the Department of Higher Education, Science and Innovation.   

Specifics of this data-bundle allocation are:

1. This grant is available only to students funded by NSFAS and Funza Lushaka.
2. The grant has a fixed duration of 3 months only, commencing on the date of your full registration with the national telephone company.
3. There are no in-month data top-ups on these allocations. Once this data allocation has been used, all further data required for academic engagements with the UFS will be for your own account.
4. The data will be provisioned directly to your mobile device from your preferred (contracted) mobile data provider on a monthly basis (for 3 months only).
5. No VPN access (through GlobalProtect) is required when accessing the academic websites of the UFS through these data bundles.
6. Your mobile number on the university’s PeopleSoft system will be used to initiate the download of the data bundles. You need to make sure that the cell number we have is your correct number. This cannot be changed afterwards.
7. There is no roll-over facility for unused data. A fresh, automatic provision will be made on a monthly basis. Unused data will not be added to the data bundles of the following month (3 months only).


1. Telkom subscribers:

Based on the DHET grant conditions, a national agreement was reached with Vodacom, MTN, and Cell C for cell-based data provisioning. Unfortunately, the same agreement could not be reached for Telkom subscribers. The Telkom offer is based on an ADSL facility installed at your place of study and is thus based on a fixed landline approach. This implies that if you do not have a fixed landline to your home (place of study), you need to apply for an ADSL facility to be installed.  The associated arrangements and costs are for your personal account.

• If you do not have a Telkom landline at home (place of study), and you prefer to be serviced through a mobile data facility, you can opt for a 3-month engagement with any of the other three mobile data providers, being Vodacom, MTN, and Cell C. In this regard, you must physically visit the preferred provider and buy a SIM card and provide the new SIM-card number to the Student Helpdesk at Student Academic Services (051 401 9666) BEFORE 14:00 on Friday 26 June 2020, as this number will now be the number to which the data bundle will be provisioned for the 3 months.  

To do so, proceed as follows:

• Select the provider you want to deal with, or which is closest to you.
• Go to the shop (outlet) and buy a new SIM (at your own cost).
• You must take your national ID and proof of residence with you to RICA the new SIM card (as per the legal requirement).
• After obtaining the new SIM card, you must provide the new cell number attached to the SIM card to the UFS through the Student Helpdesk at Student Academic Services (051 401 9666) BEFORE 14:00 on Friday 26 June 2020.
• If you prefer to update your cell number yourself, please use the following URL:


2. Please note:

Once the monthly data allocation has been downloaded to the pre-identified cell number of your chosen mobile data provider (Vodacom, MTN or Cell C), the use of the data must be carefully managed for academic purposes only.  

Should you, for whatever reason, use this data inappropriately (for private use, etc.), you will run out of data soon, as it is a limited allocation of 10 GB of daytime data and 20 GB after-hours data (30 GB in total). NO further monthly data top-ups are available to you under this grant, and all further data requirements will be billed against your private number until the next monthly allocation is downloaded to your device (3 cycles only).

3. The GlobalProtect VPN access mechanism is not required for this data use, and your access will be directly to the internet and the UFS website, from where you will be able to engage with the academic content published there.

4. Technical setup assistance:

• Once you have received your monthly data bundle, you will have to set up your mobile device as a hotspot and link your laptop or desktop device to it. The cellphone then acts as a modem through which you will be able to engage with the academic resources of the UFS.
• There is no ongoing data usage monitor to inform you of the volumes of data you have consumed per session or per day. Be careful how you manage this data.

5. General notes:

• Please make sure that we have your correct cell number on our PeopleSoft system. The final date for any changes or confirmation of your correct cell number is 14:00 on Friday 26 June 2020.  Unfortunately, no late cell number changes can be accepted thereafter.
• If you are a current Telkom subscriber, you will have to provide the number of the new SIM card to the UFS as well. Should you miss the deadline of 26 June 2020, there will be no further opportunities to correct your number, and data that should have been allocated to you, will now be used by another person for the full duration of the grant, being 3 months.
• You are not allowed to change your mobile number in the next 3 months, as the data-bundle allocation will be done in a once-off manner and will remain as such for the full duration of the data grant.

6. Technical setup guides:

Please refer to the UFS website’s Digital Life section under the ‘Student’ heading, for guides to set up your mobile phone as a hotspot and to link your laptop or desktop to your phone.

This is a valuable once-off grant by the Department of Higher Education, Science and Technology. You are encouraged to perform all the actions required to use this data optimally.

7. Enquiries:

For enquiries regarding the technical configuration of your device, please contact:

ICT Services Service Desk at +27 51 401 2000 (during office hours).

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