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Wednesday, 11 December 2019

Student cheats poverty to obtain diploma

PRAYERS FULFILLED: Tourism Management graduate, Mbali Sibande, will be capped this week during one of the ceremonies to honour graduates from the Faculty of Business and Management Sciences. PRAYERS FULFILLED: Tourism Management graduate, Mbali Sibande, will be capped this week during one of the ceremonies to honour graduates from the Faculty of Business and Management Sciences.

A dedicated student who lost her parents at a tender age has beaten poverty to graduate with her National Diploma in Tourism Management.

Mbali Sibande, 23, who hails from Springs, outside Johannesburg, will be capped this week during one of the ceremonies to honour graduates from the Faculty of Business and Management Sciences.

Mbali attributes her finest achievement to her late mother’s prayers as well as God’s mercy.

“I come from a family of four and we were raised by a single parent,” she narrates. “It wasn’t easy as we were dependent on a social grant and hand outs since mom was not working.”

Mbali’s mother sadly passed away due to cancer when she was 16 years old and she was forced to become a mother to her younger brothers.

After completing her matric in 2014 she was forced to take a gap year as her family could not afford university fees. During her gap year, she was hired at a local primary school to coach netball and that is how she saved money for higher education studies.

As she was coming to register at CPUT in 2016, a Good Samaritan who listened to her moving personal story pledged to pay for transport costs from Johannesburg to Cape Town until she finished her diploma.

“Throughout my CPUT years I did not know any difference between a day and midnight, because I had to go to class then off to a part-time job then back to my assignments or studying for a test,” recalls the tenacious Mbali. “One of the reasons I’ve been stuffing myself with a load of work is because I knew how bad the situation is at home, so I had to send money for food and for clothes as well.”

She also saved some money and bought a camera which she used to conduct private photo shoots in order to earn some pocket money.

Mbali’s advice to the youth: “You must do the things you think you cannot do because where you come from does not define you and, a strong person is the one who cries and sheds tears for a moment then gets up and fights again.”

Written by Kwanele Butana

Email: butanak@cput.ac.za

Provides coverage for the Business and Management Sciences and Education Faculties, Student Affairs Department and Cape Town and Mowbray Campuses.