Phumi's Tuition for Columbia University

Since August 2013, I have had the honor of attending Columbia University in City of New York as part of the 2016 MFA Acting Class. 

Being a proud product of South African soil, the last year has shaped and re-shaped me into a woman responsible for her role in theatre and how it continues to affect society globally. I have drooled over the sheer privilege of sitting on the laps of giants in the theatre industry and have grown such strong roots into why this art form is so necessary and how my part in it is worth committing to.

I am now however in a position similar to last year where I was close on being forced to defer my studies due to funding. For tuition and living this past year, I had accumulated funds through the Department of Arts and Culture of South Africa ($12 000), the National Arts Council of South Africa ($9000) and the Oppenheimer Memorial Trust ($18 000). The school itself has awarded me a scholarship covering close on the balance I would need for tuition. 

For the fall this year, I am without the DAC, NAC and the Oppenheimers support, which in total is pretty much all my living costs as well as some of my tuition. I am also without the remaining balance of my last semester.

After quite a tragic loss in my personal life, some of the best advice I've been given from a lecturer at Columbia went along the lines of "You know loss, what are you so afraid of? What have you possibly got to lose now?" - These words have echoed in all areas of my life and have been the springboard to taking the step with this account. 

I would hate to have to lose the last two years of my degree, and outside of knowing that this thought shouldnt even be entertained, I also stand so at peace with knowing that i'm not afraid of that - what ive learnt thus far has elastisized the sinews within my passion for acting and that knowledge is priceless.

It will be an honored miracle to raise the funds and any contribution will ripple further than you know. So thank you in advance - even if all you can donate are prayers.

I believe my biography will be an encyclopedia of hope in desolate situations, of courage and of laughter in seemingly fragile hardships.

Love in buckets

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    • 81 mos
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  • Jill Eddy 
    • $25 
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    • $100 
    • 81 mos
  • Walter Lee Younger 
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See all


Phumzile Sitole 
New York, NY
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