M i campus magazine
Issue 18 Sep|Oct 2012
Mi ed’s note
Spring has sprung with new beginnings or second chances. y favourite time of the year has finally arrived! To think that just a couple of weeks ago it was snowing in Johannesburg and other parts of the country. This just shows you how easily things can change. The month of September is also a wake up call for most students as it marks the beginning of the fourth and final term of the year. So as much as we can be excited about the change of weather, we first have to face the hurdle of the end of year exams before enjoying our summer days. As we head towards the end of the year, micampus would like to congratulate all the students around the country who will be graduating at the end of the year and wishes you all the best as you venture into the real world and page 17 explores life after graduation and some of the challenges that graduates face like unemployment. Do read about bursaries that are offered if you intend on pursuing your studies on page 4 and we have packed you some of our regular features like mitips on page 15 and Milol on page 7 just to lighten up your mood as always.
Until next time then
EDITOR: Sylvia Mabogoshi COORDINATOR & SALES MANAGER Marole Mathabatha DESIGN & LAYOUT: Skhumbuzo Mtshali
HR MANAGER Sphelele Siyabulela Mdala
MARKETING Brian Mahlangu Nowell Duze FINANCIAL MANAGER Phote Monyamane CONTIBUTORS: Inga Nani Mashudu Modau Lungelo Shezi Sharon Mathabatha Disema Mokoena Nhlanzeko Ntuli Molebogeng Chokwe TO ADVERTISE firstname.lastname@example.org 072 248 4434
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What does it mean to be a leader Heritage Day Scholarships and fellowships The end of winter, the beginning of... Straight Aâ€™s and straight shorts Mi LoL Wall Cover Story - Noxolo Mtshali Let me be (Sinethemba Mtolo) Wits says: March against violence in South Africa The profound history and icons of Wits How to write a good and attractive CV Let me be (Simo Ntuli) What lies beyond graduation
receding the dismantlement of the old regime and the dawn of the new dispensation the South African current affairs have been dominated by a series of civil protests by: discontent students- i.e. the students at Vaal University of Technology who recently vented their frustrations on the universityâ€™s property, township dwellers aggravated by the dawdling service delivery from government in Khayelitsha and most recently the Marikana mine workers that were killed during protests over wage disputes. This is a distraught depiction of a country once renowned for great activists and laudable leaders that championed the daunting quest to liberation and democracy in our country. Accordingly, the foremost question in the mind of the ordinary folk is where are the leaders of today both in the government and private arena to fill the apparent vacuum of leadership in our
country? However, to diagnose the plausible reasons for this epidemic facing our country perhaps we should investigate the role that universities play in producing community leaders. To organize our inquiry I will examine and elucidate the role of student leaders and what it means to assume such responsibility in the student community. Since its conception the university has been entrusted with the unique responsibility to prepare and shape leaders to redress the central issues that thorn society and guide the masses toward an enhanced and improved panorama. Conceivably, in our context the university would be envisaged to achieve its mandate through theorizing and effecting progressive mandatory programs that imbue students with leadership skills and conscientise them of the ceaseless African sagacious proverbs that served as guardians to vil-
lage chiefs and sages in their service to the community- i.e. the enduring Sotho adage “Batho Pele”. Such leadership philosophies aided and facilitated the scope and nature of what it meant to assume the role of leadership in a community. Inevitably, as a direct result of such philosophical leadership abets corruption and poor service delivery by leaders was an inconceivable phenomenon in those communities. However; as a current student at the University of the Western Cape affectionately referred to as “Bush” or “Udubs”, it is lamenting to observe that in universities today few students learn the leadership expertise they need and are crucial to serve their communities. In most cases, the development of student leadership proficiency is not incorporated in the academic curriculum but relegated and reduced to “extra-curricular” activities. Meaning, the academic system in place overlooks the historical and current context of disadvantaged communities in South Africa. Considering that only a meagre percentage of youth even make it to tertiary education, this is an appalling discovery. Further, by the virtue of the few that achieve university status tremendous communal hopes and expectations are exerted to these students who are completely oblivious that they are change agents or even know the theoretical and pragmatic implications of being a student leader. Perhaps, what manifests itself through collective frustrations demonstrated by ceaseless community protests for adequate service delivery and meaningful wage by mine workers is an express consequence of the aforementioned anomaly. As such, it could be that the crisis in South Africa is not so much the absence of great activists and laudable leaders but the void in the university’s academic system to prepare and mobilise leaders. In conjunction with the theme in contemplation of illuminating and expanding on the theoretical and practical implications of being a student leader I will endeavour on the next feature of our investigation: What is the role of Student Representative Councils (SRC’s) and related structures alike in facilitating change in our communities. According to Crispin Phiri the current SRC President at
the University of the Western Cape; akin to the ordinary folk, “students today have a stereotyped image of what constitutes a leader and this stereotype is anchored in the contemporary concept of leadership that emerged over the past few centuries mainly in the Western World”. According to this narrowed approach, a leader is a strong and powerful individualsomeone who makes decisions, commands many and speaks with charisma. Meaning, if one were to ask a group of students to step forth and champion the course of their community, most of them would be reluctant and shy away from the request, not necessarily because they lack the intellectual astute to lead but because they believe they do not posses any of the listed conventional attributes of a leader. Nonetheless, Ayanda Gladile the founder of Students For Uhuru (SFU) at the University of the Western Cape, (a student intellectual fraternity “conceptualized to theorise and mobilise students toward an African Renaissance and facilitate the transfer and implementation of proficiency in disadvantaged communities namely: assist disadvantaged schools to receive adequate and necessary infrastructure conducive for learning”). He says that “the term leader is conditional”. In other words, it is qualified by a prerequisite- a role. Across all spectrums in society, all leaders have a role to play and student leaders are not impervious from this principle. Therefore; contrary to the norm within the student leadership fraternity in all its variety and diversity, the role of a leader is not ceremonial or a platform to cultivate ones ego or exhaust the university’s resources. Rather, before one is regarded as a student leader or consider himself/herself thereof, as a primary requirement they must fulfil their role. Meaning; they must assume and carry out the burdens and hopes of the student community, if and when they are able and succeed in executing their roles, thereafter may we together with them begin to regard them as student leaders
eritage day is celebrated with the aim to educate the youth about culture and tradition and the contribution of all South Africans to the building of South Africa. The day is significant as it recognizes different facets of South African culture and gives South Africans a sense of belonging. A clear understanding of heritage can bring a feeling of liberty and acceptance to one’s life, as we know that heritage means an inheritance that is passed from one generation to another. People especially the youth should educate themselves about this historical occurrence so that they can be able to claim what is rightfully theirs and their birth right. This takes us back to the notion that if you know where you come from; you’ll definitely know where you are going. WHAT IS OUR SOUTH AFRICAN HERITAGE? Heritage is all about what South Africans, have inherited. Some of these things include: • National monuments and historical building • Game reserves and wildlife parks • Music and literature written by South Africans
• Art and sculpture • Museums such as Robben Island • Historical sites such as the Cradle of Humankind • Coastline and mountain ranges – Drakensberg http://www.educationstation.co.za/Documents/Holidays/ South_Africa_celebrates_Heritage_Day.pdf Heritage day is about embracing South Africa’s diverse cultures, customs, traditions, histories, and languages. It is of outmost importance that each and every citizen to educate themselves about the day, what it is all about and how it came to be. There is more to the day than just having a braai.
A Mandela Rhodes scholarship provides full funding for up to a maximum of two years of postgraduate study. The award is open to all African citizens under the age of 30 years and recipients must study towards Honours or Masters Degrees at recognized South African institutions. Unfortunately the applications for this great fellowship are closed for this year. But itâ€™s not too late for next year. This programme has been commended for its ability to recruit the best academics and future leaders. It is however one of the toughest fellowships to be chosen for. Recent winner Elnari Potgieter (22), an honours student in the Political Science Department at SU - had to attend a few interviews, write essays and compete with students across Africa. Candidates must also prove that they support the four values of the Mandela Rhodes Foundation in everything they undertake. These values are leadership, reconciliation, the promotion of education as a way to advance human development, and entrepreneurship. If you think youâ€™ve got all that plus the excellent academic record required check out: http://www.mandelarhodes.org/ AUDITOR-GENERAL SOUTH AFRICA BURSARY FOR SOUTH AFRICAN STUDENTS 2013 Auditor-General Bursary for South African citizens studying or intending to study towards a Chartered Accountant (i.e. Bcom Accounting CA Stream, Bachelor of Accounting CA stream and B compt, 2013 South Africa. Scholarship can be taken at: South Africa Eligibility: Qualifications Grade 12 students: -Must obtain matric exemption and university acceptance -Must obtain at least 60% for English -Must obtain at least 60% for Mathematics (not Maths literacy) -Must be studying or intending to study towards a qualification as a Chartered Accountant (i.e. BCom Accounting CA stream, Bachelor of Accounting CA stream and BCompt) at a University accredited by the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA). Scholarship Application Deadline: 16 September 2012 Apply pmline at: http://www.agsa.co.za/ Anglo American Bursary Programme for Undergraduate Students, 2012 South Africa Undergraduate Bursary in the field of Mechanical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Industrial Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Mining, Geology, Land Survey, Law.
SCHOLARSHIP PROVIDER: ANGLO AMERICA Requirements: Preference will be given to candidates with an exceptional academic record who also participate in extracurricular activities. We prefer to receive all applications via our online application process: By registering, you will be able to complete the online application. The bursary is a comprehensive package that covers both financial as well as developmental support throughout the study period. All applications are done electronically, this speeds up the process and ensures fairness and electronic tracking of applications received within a particular period. Applications open: 6 August 2012 and close: 7 September 2012 Apply online on: angloamerican.gradx.net ABSA GRADUATE PROGRAMME: This programme is for students in the final year of their studies in the following fields: commerce, engineering, accounting, risk management, IT, law and economics Requirements: Postgraduate degree obtained before January 2013, less than 24 months Apply for this programme at: absa.co.za For more bursary and scholarship information, you can check out these sites below: Puffandpass.co.za Gostudy.mobi Scholarships.com Gal.co.za Africaeducation.org
t’s the last stretch of the year and the end-zone is almost in sight, only a few more months are left and right now it’s make -it or break- it time. The year always seems so long when it begins but as soon as it’s in full swing, it zips past almost at the speed of light. Mixed feelings linger in the air in the rooms and lecture halls of tertiary institutions. Anxiety, relief, stress, determination- it all depends on how one kick started everything. As you start preparing, can you think back to the months gone by and honestly assess whether you have achieved all you have set out? Have your expectations been met and have you lived up to the expectations set out for you? Perhaps you have made some very regrettable mistakes you wish you had the chance to rectify but what’s happened has happened, time still has an open chapter that only you can fill the pages of. Most students right now are preparing for the final exams, tests or practical assessments at their respective institutions and the nerves are starting to settle in again. I spoke to a few students to find out what they are doing at this time of their academic year and what they hope to see happen at this particular time.
Thokozane Masombuka, 21 year old Graphic design student at Rosebank College:
For me the end of the winter season welcomes the warmer spring season, it’s time to get outdoors and enjoy the weather. I am in the last semester at school and writing tests, doing assignments and I hope to excel in each of them. I’m also looking forward to finally getting my diploma and drivers licence before the end of the year, so I’m quite optimistic and anticipating positive things.
The end of winter means the start of spring and you literally start to feel the heat. It’s the middle of a semester that went by too fast. Tests and assignments are coming up every week and before you know it, you are waiting for your DP marks and then its exams. At the end of the semester Ntombifuthi Mabaso, 22 year is the highlight of the year which is the long summer old Law Student at the Uniholidays. versity of KwaZulu Natal: Everybody can feel the excitement and anticipation in the air and of course we can’t wait for summer holidays to kick in so we can refresh, regroup and relax. But as we wave goodbye to winter and set our sights on ending the year, let us not rest on our laurels and lose focus on what is important-finishing strong and looking back at the year with minimal regrets, let’s end this one on a good note.
Miyelani Mbiza (21) 2nd year Marketing student
“Since my first year in varsity I have been partying and that has not affected my studies. I believe everything must be balanced; one can’t always focus only on academic side whereas there is also a social side that one should acknowledge. I dedicate five days of the week to my academics, by Friday I’m exhausted and need a break that’s when I go partying just to stay sane. But when I have assignments and tests I make sure to prioritize my academics first and party later. One thing that students do wrong is to fail to prioritize, that’s why you often hear cases that students fail or drop out of varsity because of partying. You do not have to be on your books 24/7 to be a straight A student, you just have to get your priorities straight party hard and study extra hard.’’
Sanele Mabena (22) 3rd year IT student
“I am a self proclaimed party animal. I party almost every weekend but I still get good marks. I think the reason is because I balance the two, I don’t let one overpower the other. I always remind myself why I am here this always keeps me focused. I may be a party animal but I let nothing compromise my school work. To all students out there play hard but work harder and you will never go wrong”
Philip Jacobs (24) 2ND year Multimedia student
“Too much of everything is not good for anyone, all I am trying to say is that if you work without playing you can end up in a psychiatrist ward and also if you play without work you will end up without your degree or diploma. I go out on weekends to relax my mind and network. Since first year I have been passing with distinctions and partying every weekend, it all depends on your dedication and hard work and not on how much you party”
Name: Noxolo Nokwanda Mtshali Date of Birth: 11 June 1988 Star sign: Gemini Age: 24 Facebook page name: Noxolo Mtshali Home town: Ulundi, Kwazulu Natal Studied: sports management at the University of Johannesburg Current occupation: presenter of Kids Newsroom and SABC zulu news weather. I took some time out to chill with Noxolo Nokwanda Mtshali at the SABC. Noxolo is a presenter of kids’ news room and the SABC news weather. I asked this beautiful born free lady some few questions and this is what she had to say: 1. Q: WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BE A PRESENTER? A: I didn’t really plan to be a presenter I just stumbled on it and tested my luck and yeah I got the presenting job 2. Q: WHAT WAS YOUR FIRST JOB? A: My first Job was worked at Virgin Active as an intern coach for Kids 3. Q: WHO IS YOUR FAVORITE MOVIE STAR? A: Denzel Washington, I love the way he can portray different characters. 4. Q: WHO WOULD YOU LIKE TO MEET ONE DAY? A: I can’t believe most of us live in South Africa but never met the father of democracy Nelson Mandela;,I would love to meet Utata Mandela one day. 5. Q: WHAT WOULD BE THE FIRST THING YOU WOULD DO IF TODAY WAS YOUR LAST DAY? A: I would tell my mom and my sister that I love them and give all my money to someone who really needs it. 6. Q: WHAT IS YOUR DEFINITION OF THE RAINBOW NATION? A: Born Free. The generation that is not limited of ideas and opportunities 8. Q: WHAT WERE YOUR CHILDHOOD DREAMS? A: a lot of people as a child dream about being a teacher, so I was one of them. But as I grew up I just knew that I possess something greater. 9. Q: WHAT WAS YOUR LUCKY BREAK? A: My lucky break was kids’ news in 2009, I didn’t know about the auditions I just bumped into it and auditioned. 10. Q: WHAT DO YOU GET UP TO IN YOUR FREE TIME? A: If I don’t go down to KZN to see my mom, I am just a typical 24 year old, I chill with my friends. 11. Q: WHAT DO YOU DO TO STAY FIT? A: I have good genes by nature so I don’t exercise. But I would like to exercise for health reasons because I don’t want to gain weight.
SINETHEMBA MTOLO (21) Sinethemba Mtolo fell pregnant at the age of 17, going to 18, and is now a mother of a 3 year old daughter. Tell us about your journey into motherhood? When it happened, and how it has affected your life as a whole? (Yerrrr!) I fell pregnant in my 1st year, as soon as I moved out of home BANG!!! Well coming from an African cultural family, it was hard to tell my parents so I decided to stay at res until I gave birth. When I was 6 months pregnant, my parents found out. They were both devastated because it was unexpected but as time went by they accepted. My life didn’t change drastically because I had support from the babydad’s family, who took the baby when she was 4 days old. She has been living with them since, and I see her during the holidays. My parents have accepted and love my baby to bits. At that moment, how was the state of your relationship with the baby’s father and how is it now? Was he also a student, at that time? We were much in love at that time. Even though I was scared to tell him at first, he was very supportive. He was there for the first ultra sound and when I gave birth. It was like a fairytale lived.
Uhm... Well we broke up 5 months ago and no, he was already working at the time I fell pregnant. What procedures were followed, particularly culturally as soon as both families found out,up until the point when the baby was born, and taken by her father’s family? Our families were friends, and have maintained that relationship, as they both value the importance of family bonds. When I was 6 months pregnant his family went to report the damages and asked my parents to ` name their price’ which they did. When my daughter was 5 months old they came and paid all damages I understand that you come from a Zulu background. Kindly explain the whole concept and procedure of damages to us?
If a guy breaks a girl’s virginity he is expected to pay what we call ‘inkomo kaMama’ translated: ‘mothers cow’ because it is believed that the mother is responsible for her daughter and raising her into being a woman of virtue. If the girl happens to get a baby before marriage the guy’s family pays ‘fathers cow’. In most instances if the girl has a baby and her virginity has not being paid for, the virginity cow is not very important, because it is a separate damage all together, which should be honored before the pregnancy. However it is not paid much these days because girls hardly ever tell their parents when they have lost their virginity. It was easier to monitor these things in the past, as young girls were often taken for virginity testing.
My baby girl is everything to me. I thought maybe I’d be kicked out of home but my parents’ support has left me with no regrets.
and female students, specifically those who are fresh from high school? It is always the same thing. University is about having fun responsibly! First year students tend to get overwhelmed by change, and freedom. Some might have not have the luck I had (having someone raise the baby for me). It is difficult raising a child on your own and most different if you depend on someone to do it for you. Do you have any regrets? What do you wish you’d have done differently? Not at all!!! My baby girl is everything to me. I thought maybe I’d be kicked out of home but my parents’ support has left me with no regrets. But I am not having another one any time soon (laughs)
Speaking of virginity testing, what’s your take on the whole procedure,both now and back in the days? Phew! That’s the one thing my parents never believed in and I’ve also grown to dislike it. Back then and now is the same I still think it contributes to women and children abuse. How has it been juggling being a mother and being a student, both mentally and emotionally. Particularly since you do not stay with your child? To be honest it is ok, I do miss her but I am glad she doesn’t live with me. Being a mother is a full time job. When I had a baby I wasn’t ready both mentally and emotionally. When I am with her during the holidays she gives me the run around and I can see that I wouldn’t have coped if she lived with me Bearing in mind that what happened to you, happens and could happen to any other young students. What would be your advice to both male
cademics collected gowns from the Great Hall, which is where the march took off on what was declared ‘National Mourning Day’. This day was declared to memorialize the lives of 44 Lonmin miners lost in Marikana on the 16 of August 2012. The murder of the miners by the South African police marks a watershed moment in South Africa’s post- apartheid history. Attempts by the media, the state, the ANC, other established political parties, and the established trade unions including Cosatu, to portray the massacre and the strike by the Lonmin workers as caused by inter-trade union rivalry cannot hide the fact that the massacre put South Africa’s democracy on trial. “We should all flinch with the same pain when violence is visited upon an individual or a group; a single child or a gathering of adults. Social justice cannot be allowed to reside in the stoning hand or the trigger finger on those with more power. This ongoing violence is a part of our national and collective shame and we should take this time to seriously reflect on
the state of our society, and to disturb the conscience of our community,” says Prof. Yunus Ballim, Acting Vice- Chancellor and Principal of Wits University. Wits wishes to emphasize that the issues are not easy and that they are complex. Poor people are not violent. What we do know however is that inequality and violence often go together. That is a subject that intellectuals and intellectual spaces like universities need to turn their minds to and explain this complexity.
The origins of Wits lie in the South African School of mines, which was established in 1896 and transferred to Johannesburg as the Transvaal Technical Institute in 1904, becoming the Transvaal University College in 1906 and renamed the South African School of Mines and Technology four years later. Full University status was granted in 1922 (90 YEARS TODAY), incorporating the College as the University of the Witwatersrand, with effect from the 1st of March. Seven months later the inauguration of the University was duly celebrated. Prof. Jan Hofmeyr became its first principal. Construction began at Milner Park on a site donated to the University by the Johannesburg Municipality. The University had, at that stage, six faculties (Arts, Medicine, Engineering, Law and Commerce), 37 departments, 73 members of academic staff and little more than 1000 students. The period between 1947 and the 1980s was marked by considerable growth of student numbers increased rapidly to 6275 in 1963, 10600 in 1975 and 16400 by 1985. Since 2000, Wits has been implementing expansion and modernization plans across different areas of the campus. The delivery of excellent customer service and the provision of more leisure and convenience facilities to students and staff have also been an important part of these plans. The main library, Wartenweiler underwent a major revamp. This modernization exercise resulted in the traditional model of a library being dramatically altered by the installation ICT connectivity and knowledge commons (group learn-
ing areas) throughout the entire building. Icons 91 Rhodes Scholars have originated from Wits. Only a limited number of theses coveted scholarships are awarded to outstanding students worldwide. A group of Wits academics made an extensive contribution to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the co-winner of the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize. Wits is also proud of its Nobel Prize laureates- Nelson Mandela (Peace), Ron Klug (Chemistry), Sydney Brenner (Medicine) and Nadine Gordimer (Literature). In 2008, Brenner agreed to the establishment of the Sydney Brenner Institute of Molecular Biosciences at Wits. Seven Witsies have been awarded prestigious National Orders by the President for their continuing contribution to science, art and medicine in the country. Jeanne Zaidel- Rudolph, Professor of Composition and Theory produced the new composite version of the South African National Anthem and the official version used today. Former President of South Africa, N R Mandela, received honorary doctorate of law degree at the University of the Witwatersrand, on the 6th September 1991.
ver heard the phrase beauty gets the eyes and the personality gets the heart? Well that’s exactly what a CV is: a beautiful girl who gets the attention of the employee seeker. She needs to be well dressed, filled with all the attributes of the perfect girlfriend, the most loyal life partner and most committed and hardworking house wife. But she still needs to meet the employer‘s requirements. So in an effort to make my beautiful girl, my CV, seem smart I’m going to add my matric certificate and my impending degree (which is taking long). I might add kind, caring, committed, loyal, hard -working, efficient and creative-just to give her some personality. Then maybe I’ll add some charity work I did last week- just to add that ‘wife’ effect. She’s gotta have accessories right? So I add my membership to the poetry society, my talent in writing, public speaking and liking for photography. She needs some patriotic essence right? So I add my membership to the Model United Nations and claim how impressive I am as a debater. Add my membership to the Student Christian Organization and her morals won’t be questioned. I like to keep in shape so my talent in long distance running and membership to a local gym is added. I spent 2 weeks as a barman so hey let me chuck that in too just to add that vibe. All done. CV is packed filled with everything I’ve been told all employers are looking for. The problem is, the recruiter probably stopped at : “He does not have the matric marks I want or the appropriate degree. We are done here! On to the next one. ” Now
all that work the charities, the memberships, the extra talents and the unnecessary inclusion of my likes and dislikes has not helped me at all. Or even worse, this unnecessary packing of my CV has cost me the job for its void inclusion of added extras. What’s the lesson here then? Stop doing things just to swell your CV and see how many more pages you can fill. As much as a comprehensive CV is necessary to land you that big job, how relevant is “I’m the president of the poetry club” when you are applying for a position to be a Junior economic analyst? How necessary is “I’m a member of the Model United Nations” when applying for an engineering job? How relevant is “I’m president of the Student Christian Organization” when applying for a Job as a Junior Lawyer. I’m not saying these affiliations and participations in these organisations is a bad thing. Believe me I’m pro-participation. I’m a member of five student societies on campus and I recently joined the Model United Nations society at UJ. It is what it sounds like- it’s a replication of the United Nations in a student form, bringing world political, economic and
development issues to students level. I was intrigued and I asked a few members why they joined. Zama khumalo a PPE student condemned the notion of joining just to stuff her CV with something extra. She claimed that the association was relevant to her course and her career aspirations of working for the UN in the future. Not many people hold the same view. Students have been known to join societies and seek position only for the gain of packing their CVâ€™s. Just to make it that much longer and not seem like your life is uninteresting. I donâ€™t blame them. You want to set yourself apart from other candidates, be different. If you join a society that is relevant to what you are studying and your aspirations and it will only add quality and substance to your CV I say go for it. Recruiters are looking for candidates of quality, substance and relevance. Rather have a CV thatâ€™s a light read with all the most important and relevant information, after all a longer CV does not make you a better candidate.
SIMO NTULI (21) Tell us about your journey, from the time you matriculated to when you chose your career path?
n matric (2008) I played second team for my school (Durban High School), not making first team meant no KZN trials, spirits were down, so mother wanted studies and it made sense to go study since I wasn’t playing first
team. I applied at the Uniersity of Pretoria for engineering but my points weren’t quite enough so I didn’t qualify. I did though get accepted by the Tuks/Bulls Academy so I pursued that. It is a rugby academy and we
trained there Mondays to Thursdays 3 sessions a day, It was tough but I enjoyed it. That’s where I decided I’m going to a make it my career. Having mentioned that your mother was keen on you studying, How has the journey been for her? (Laughs and pauses) Mom believed that you are nothing in life without a qualification, she still believes that. She is right, I will complete my studies I’m just putting my rugby before them at this stage. It took a while to get that understanding between me and her, I had to play it smart, keep her happy and calm. She loves drinking her tea, I was always there to give her that cup of tea (laughs).I made a few provincial teams, and managed to get her to watch my big game at ABSA stadium and “BOOM” there was hope, she felt I could make it, from that day she has been behind me always.
“I TREAT MYSELF LIKE A PRO. I HAVE A LONG WAY TO GO, BUT I’VE ALSO DONE WELL FOR MYSELF.” How much do you believe in the power of choice, especially if it is outside of what most people believe to be the norm? I’m all for it, it’s your life, if you’re willing, accept no excuses! If it doesn’t work out, look at no one else but yourself, and realize that it will take a lot of hard work and sacrifice. Tell us where you are right now where your rugby aspirations are concerned? How far or close are you to where you want to be? I treat myself like a pro. I have a long way to go, but I’ve also done well for myself. I want to be stable in a union and commit to it, learn the team’s tradition and game plans, a union that will take me in and groom me, that’s where I want to be. Which team are you playing for presently, and which team do you desire to eventually play for? I’m playing my club rugby for jaguars 1st team, which is one of the Sharks Academy’s arms. I made the WEELDEBEAST XV in a tournament,
which will take place from the 2nd- 7th of September. This is a great opportunity to represent my province. I would love to eventually play for any big team that will be willing to invest in me, which I will in turn give my all for! How would you say this journey has shaped you, as a young man with both personal and professional aspirations? I have learned to accept nobody’s definition of me. I define and am creating myself. What would your advice be to students who are at the stage of choosing their career paths? Particulary those with rather “rare” choices? I can’t advise much there as I still experience these difficulties. I feel safe because my family and close ones are behind me, they believe in me. Maybe if you do choose what you want to do, get the family’s blessing, they must support you. What or who would you say is your inspiration? I’m inspired by those who go for what they want those who want to make a change and realize that it starts with them. I love surrounding myself with positive people. I believe we all can learn a thing or two from both these practical stories. What I picked up, particularly from the first story is the importance of rising from the consequences of your choices, and moving on with life. However posible it may be. I cannot over stress the importance of holding on to your dreams and aspirations, even after a “great fall.” The second story inspires boldness and determination towards one’s desires and dreams. The youth should not fear to explore and relish life, the way they wish to, even if there are hurdles on the way. We need to train ourselves to be comfortable with our choices. Such comfort comes from knowing, understanding and accepting yourself, particularly your uniqueness.
“I’m still confident enough to apply for jobs and keep on having faith that something might come up.”
he 4th of September was an important day in my life. It was the day I had been looking forward to since I started college and was one of the biggest milestones in my life- the day I graduated with a Diploma in Media Studies. I and almost 300 other fellow students did what 700 others who had dropped out along the way hadn’t done which was to stick it out until the end. Seeing that our graduation day is so late in the year, this gave us the opportunity to start looking for internships/mentorships/learnerships and even jobs in our respective majors early in the year. At the end of 2011 we all had this energy and confidence that we were ready to get out there and show the world what we had learnt and were capable of. But in a country where the successful employment statistics for graduates are very disheartening, it’s easier said than done and most of us didn’t really know what lay on the other side of the door once we have passed through it. This experience isn’t only isolated to myself and my peers, it happens to
graduates across the board from different tertiary institutions and professions. Job hunting can be one of the most debilitating and de-motivating phases of life anybody goes through. Most people (especially parents) are under the impression that a qualification in hand guarantees a job once obtained. It is true that education is the key to getting there, but it isn’t always an assurance of it. It’s a competitive environment out in the working world and getting your foot in the door is more than a challenge. The enemy of most graduates is the dreaded ‘experience’, almost every company wants it, and almost every graduate doesn’t HAVE it. It’s a sad irony and one always wonders if this makes any sense because students spent those years of experience that companies require, studying at tertiary. As time passes and you attend one interview after the other, the pressure to make something of your qualification mounts. Pressure from yourself, parents, relatives and even peers, people want to see you now putting what you have learnt to use and starting your official career life. There is also the misconception that students from Universities are at a better advantage and secure jobs more easily than those in colleges, FET colleges and universities of technologies. But this notion is very misguided; there are lots of university graduates sitting at home with no job. I went out and spoke to a few peers of mine who have found themselves in this exact position.
MLUNGISI SITHOLE, 21 YEAR GRADUATE CURRENTLY JOB HUNTING, STUDIED MEDIA STUDIES AT BOSTON MEDIA HOUSE. Q: Before graduating, what were your expectations of the working world? A: I expected to have it easy, to find a job soon and get an extremely comfortable salary Q: What are some of the disappointments and challenges you have encountered? A: well I realised that you don’t start at a hundred percent, you have to work extra hard to get to the top Q: How has job hunting affected your morale? Are you still optimistic or feeling less motivated to find a job? A: I feel like I’m in the right place to learn more and get more industry knowledge, I’ve realised that I’m multi-talented and have surrounded myself with mentors that can help me realise my full potential. I have always been optimistic and my morale is still boosted. Q: Is there pressure on you from anyone to find a job? A: There is immense pressure from family; I suspect that my parents feel like I entered a low class industry when there is law, engineering etc. It makes me put pressure on myself to work harder.
EMILY SIBISI, 20 YEAR OLD GRADUATE CURRENTLY JOB HUNTING, STUDIED FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT AT EKHURULENI WEST COLLEGE. Q: Before graduating, what were your expectations of the working world? A: While I was studying things seemed easy concerning job hunting but the reality is things are very difficult out there Q: What are some of the disappointments and challenges you have encountered? A: There are quite a number of challenges when you are seriously seeking employment. For example applying for a post that requires 5 years of experience which I don’t have, disappointments like not being called for an interview. Q: How has job hunting affected your morale? Are you still optimistic or feeling less motivated to find a job? A: Honestly it hasn’t affected my morale in a bad way. I’m still confident enough to apply for jobs and keep on having faith that something might come up. Q: Is there pressure on you from anyone to find a job? A: Yes, from my peers but when it comes to my parents I’m getting a lot of support which keeps me going, positive and realistic at all times.
Mi Career PRECIOUS NENE, 21 YEAR OLD STUDENT AT WITS UNIVERSITY, STUDYING CHARTERED ACCOUNTING Q: As a student what are your expectations after you graduate in terms of job hunting? A: Job hunting won’t be a problem since I have a contract with Eskom already. Most students at Wits don’t struggle with job hunting because companies are always coming to recruit students on campus. Q: What are your fears about venturing into the working world? A: The main fear I have is knowing that people are investing millions in me so I’ll have to do a great job, it’s not like when you are still a student and you can afford to make mistakes. Q: What do you think is the cause of so many graduates not getting employment? A: Some don’t do enough research in terms of finding out more about the job opportunities in the fields that they will be venturing in.
It’s clear that as students we have more or less the same fears when it comes to our futures in the working world, all most of us want is to make it, prove that we are capable and make our parents proud of our efforts. The best we can do in these difficult situations is to hold on and keep going no matter how long it takes. It’s hard to stay positive and motivated but we need to surround ourselves with supportive people and always keep your eye on the prize, nobody ever moved forward by constantly looking back.