National Science and Technology Forum (NSTF)

Ndumiso Perfect Ndamane (studying BSc Electrical Engineering)

Ndumiso Perfect Ndamane is from KwaZulu-Natal. He is studying BSc Electrical Engineering at the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN).

Education is your key to success and it is the only way to close the door to poverty.” 

Tell us a bit about your school.

Umlazi Comprehensive Technical High School was one of the best technical schools in the province or more so, in the country, led by an amazing principal Mr WL Luthuli. My time in school was not all milk and honey, as I had eye problems from late in Grade 6 that got worse throughout my years in high school. (He says he sorted this out in Grade 12 and life was back to normal.)

Any advice on managing school?

In school, one of the most challenging aspects is time management. Everything revolves around how you manage your time

Any tips for learners in Grades 11 and 12?

I realised that I enjoyed Mathematics and Physical Science in Grade 10 when I was performing exceptionally well compared to the other students. [Also] I understood them far beyond the average student. A lot of people played important roles in this. My teachers provided the knowledge. My parents provided moral and financial support.

Who inspires you?

I am inspired by wise people and with great age comes great wisdom. I love to spend time with my grandfather because he speaks wisdom every time he opens his mouth. I hope that one day I become half as wise as he is today. Solomon, in the bible, was known as the wisest person to have walked the earth because he asked for his wisdom from God. I also look up to him. This is because knowledge and wisdom are two different things. Wisdom is applied knowledge.

What advice do you have for matriculants who have to apply for places at higher education institutions?

Apply everywhere preferably online. Do not give up if a university or a bursary turns you down. In fact, expect that because most of them use your Grade 11 results as a reference. Apply early – the early bird catches the worm. You can even apply when you are in varsity during the first semester although I do not recommend that you do this

Why did you choose the course you are studying now?

From a young age, I’ve always been fond of experimenting and observing. This course will allow me to do just that, and get paid at the same time.

Where do you see yourself 10 years from now?

I recently started watching Grey’s Anatomy. One of the characters, Meredith Grey, has a mother, Ellis Grey, who is a two-time winner of the (fictional) Harper Avery Award. On the show, she is famous for inventing the Grey Method, a surgical procedure. In 10 years from now, I see myself teaching people my method of doing things – the Ndamane method

What makes an achiever?

An achiever is not a person who sets a goal and reaches it, but it is a person that sets a goal and through trial and error comes very close, because experience is the best teacher. To achieve a goal, you need to know your limits, so you can push beyond them. You need motivation and that, coupled with hard work and dedication, can rule the world.

A message to South African youth?

Be good, do good. Challenges are what makes life interesting and overcoming them is what makes life meaningful.

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