For students looking for a welcoming, supportive environment to study along with all the perks of the big city life, Johannesburg may not always come to mind.
However, it is easy to see why so many students love living in the City of Gold (or Jozi or Joburg). This year’s QS Best Student Cities survey saw Johannesburg ranked in the study for the first time (84th of 100 top cities). Johannesburg achieved a particularly high score for affordability in the Best Student Cities index, reflecting its fairly low tuition fees and living costs. Monash South Africa gives us 10 more reasons why Joburg is the best place to study:
- Affordability and quality of life – Johannesburg is one of the world’s cheapest cities for students in the QS survey, reflecting its status as one of Africa’s most affordable major cities and ranking eleventh globally. QS measures the cost of living in a city based on a range of factors like tuition fees and the cost of key consumer goods.
- Vibrant social scene – No one can deny that Joburg has a vibrant social scene, with everything from sophisticated bars, shebeens, shisanyamas and clubs to laidback trendy markets and outdoor spots. It offers a great deal for the student looking to enjoy their free time with newfound friends.
- Multitude of cultures – It is home to a large number of residents from all over the world and from China Town to the Oriental Plaza to the mosques, churches and shuls, there are numerous cultural hubs to explore.
- Amazing parks and recreation – Jozi is surrounded by nature in every direction, including Hartbeespoort Dam, Magaliesburg Mountains and nature reserves like the Lion Park, as well as the Cradle of Humankind, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. But the heart of Johannesburg is equally green, with six million trees and beautiful botanical gardens providing green lungs for the city. The National Botanical Gardens in Roodepoort provides local students with a remarkable picnicking and walking spot to enjoy Joburg’s temperate, pleasant climate.
- Strong support culture for foreign students and expats – There is a strong expat network with foreign student support at many campuses.
- Strong urban regeneration – The CBD (central business district) has seen a surge in regeneration bringing with it strong African pride, interesting gathering spots merged with history and idiosyncratic elements, great for exploring with friends. Check out Maboneng Precinct.
- Business opportunities and great networking – The city is at the heart of African business and studying in this hub provides great networking, job training and internship opportunities. Many Africans aspire to live and work in Johannesburg due to higher salaries and the greater demand for graduates.
- Friendly people – Joburg has some of the friendliest people. From your Uber driver and supermarket teller to lecturers and fellow students, Joburg citizens are always helpful and ready to share a joke or bit of banter. Joburgers believe in service with a smile!
- Shopping and brands – Host to some of the largest and most highly regarded malls in Africa, from Clearwater Mall, Sandton City and Rosebank to The Mall of Africa, Joburg has both luxury and affordable brands for students with a flair for fashion.
- Good transport network – Although it has limited public transport, the network is growing daily. The Gautrain connects many hubs, with Gautrain buses, ReaVaya, bike paths and metro buses providing more links than ever. Using the Uber and Taxify Apps, taxi services help students travel to local spots outside of business hours.
Source: Monash South Africa. Images: Pixabay