Never give up: Determined student from poor village overcomes odds to graduate

Never give up: Determined student from poor village overcomes odds to graduate

- Olwethu Waka comes from a rural village in the Eastern Cape

- He overcame the odds to graduate with a BSc in Mathematics

- He's appealing for help to study further in the UK

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A determined student from a poor village in rural Eastern Cape obtained his BSc in Mathematics despite the extreme odds stacked against him.

28-year-old Olwethu Waka comes from Nontshinga village, where the community still has no access to running water and other services to this day.

He discovered his love for Mathematics at Pakamani Senior Secondary School. He obtained an excellent 89 percent score in the subject in his matric in 2010.

Subsequently, a neighbour introduced him to Mr Jock McConnachie, who runs the Qolora Education Centre.

The Centre promotes quality education in Olwethu's area. Jock arranged a scholarship for Olwethu through Eskom in 2011, learned.

Unfortunately, Owelthu ended up studying Mechanical Engineering, a subject he had no interest in, at Walter Sisulu University. Coupled with lack of adequate facilities, he failed.

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Fortunately, Olwethu did not give up. He took a break and worked as a volunteer teacher at Qolora Education Centre.

Following a further assessment, he won a place at Rhodes University to study Mathematics. He eventually obtained his degree in 2016 and is currently doing his Honours.

Olwethu continues to give back to his community through volunteer teaching. He also teamed up with friends to form an under-15 football team for the youth to tackle drug abuse.

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Writing on, the tenacious student said he hopes to obtain a Masters degree in Financial Mathematics in the United Kingdom. He therefore appealed for help:

My village is extremely poor, with a statistically insignificant number of young people making it to university, thus perpetuating the cycle of desperate poverty – both economic and academic.

His ultimate aim is to return to his community to improve the lives of his people. To assist Olwethu, please contact Mr Jock McConnachie at +27828590402.

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