Some MCAST students are still waiting to receive their maintenance grants and stipends, despite being told they’d get them by the end of the year.
In emails sent to the students back in December, the Stipends Office had said they believed they’d be able to finalise the applications process by the end of the year.
The main reason for this delay is a backlog of applications that the Stipends Department is currently dealing with. According to emails sent out on 14th December, the department had vetted 4,159 applications, with 871 still pending. “We thus ask you to be a little more patient,” the email continued, however students were left frustrated (and without grants) over the holidays.
“I went to complain two months ago and they said we had to wait,” one MCAST student told Lovin Malta.
The MCAST Stipends Office confirmed with Lovin Malta that they were aware of the situation and had circulated an email to students at the start of December letting them know that their applications were being processed. Changes to the process lengthened it by adding steps like students providing evidence of their employment history and/or recent payslips.
Last month, 2017/8 KSM President Ahmed Lamlum had taken to the official MCAST Students Facebook group with some updates.
“During a meeting with the stipend office earlier this morning, they made it clear that those students whose grant is not received yet will receive it on the 7th of this month,” Lamlum said. “Also, those who didn’t receive their first stipend will receive it with the other one on the 30th.”
“Everyone is still getting used to it,” a representative of the MCAST Stipends Office told Lovin Malta.
“But some students already received their grants and stipends last Monday,” the representative continued.
Lovin Malta reached out to the MCAST Stipends Office for an official statement, but they did not reply at the time of writing.