5 Million Euro for Green Hydrogen Scholarship Programme

The Namibia Youth for Green Hydrogen (Y4GH) Scholarship Programme is an initiative of the Namibian and German governments aimed at bridging the skills gap in this new sector.

The Namibian and German governments signed a Joint Communique of Intent (JCOI) on 25 August 2021, which availed grant funding for the development of the green hydrogen industry in Namibia. The two government identified capacity building as one of the key priority areas in the development of green hydrogen, hence the introduction of the scholarship programme which is fully funded by the German ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) to the tune of 5 million Euro (approx. N$88 million) with the Southern African Science Service Centre for Climate Change and Adaptive Land Management (SASSCAL) being the implementing partner for the Y4GH programme.

The scholarship has been designed to target two groups as a first move towards building a green hydrogen-ready workforce, Kevin Stephanus, Senior Professional Officer: Human Capacity Development at SASSCAL Regional Secretariat, told students at the Green Hydrogen High Schooler Event, organised by the German Embassy and UNAM on 25 November, 2022.

The first group are unemployed Namibian graduates and the second are those interested in pursuing Vocational Education and Training in green hydrogen. The study programmes include; Masters (MSc/MA) degree in Renewable Energy & Green Hydrogen and Technical Vocational Education and Training - Certificates (1 Yr) & Diploma (2 Yrs) in Renewable Energy & Green Hydrogen (or other fields supporting this area).

Stephanus said that a maximum budget of €25,000 (approx. N$440,000) has been set for full duration of a study programme and for each candidate selected within the Y4H2 MSc program. "Awareness raising events on the green hydrogen scholarships took place at the National Youth week held in Lüderitz in April 2022, as well as through online presentations. There was also a dedicated email set up to address queries and assist applicants with their applications. Submission of applications for the first call closed on 08 June, 2022, and were in the final stage of processing. The next call for applications will open during the first quarter of 2023."

Motjatji Malatji, from the South African Renewable Energy Technology Centre (SARETEC), also addressed the students on available training opportunities in renewable energy. "SARETEC offers specialized industry related and accredited training for the entire renewable energy industry in wind and solar. This includes training for wind turbine service technicians, solar PV mounters, installers and technicians, for which holders of high school certificates can apply."