It does not matter where you’re from, what matters is your destination.




Department of water and sanitation

Awodwa Magingi, 30, is a geohydrologist with the department of water and sanitation. Her work involves the development of policies, strategies and guidelines for assessment planning and management of groundwater resources in South Africa.

It involves promoting the conjunctive use of both surface water and groundwater and linking that to the changing climate. This includes assisting municipalities and other water service providers to operate, maintain and manage the groundwater resources in their area in a sustainable manner.

Awodwa, who has a master’s in geohydrology from the University of the Free State, says it is her background that has driven her to excel.

“It has always been my dream to improve where I come from, which is a rural area that seems to be forgotten at times; 29 years into freedom and that place still doesn’t have any water reticulation system, old people still fetch water from the river.”

In 2018, she was registered as a professional earth scientist. Outside office hours, Awodwa volunteered for World Merit South Africa as the director of marketing and membership and was promoted to vice-president. Her advocacy work is also visible through her recent work with the Groundwater Young Professionals committee for Southern Africa with the Groundwater Management Institute.

  • MSc Geohydrology, University of the Free State
  • BSc Honours Geology: University of the Free State
  • BSc Geology: University of the Free State

Obtained professional earth scientist registration in 2018

When I was doing grades eight and nine, my teachers started calling me Dr Magingi. My academic record impressed most of my teachers. They believed in dreams that I had not yet dreamt, and they instilled hope in a very clouded mind. Some believed that I would be a medical doctor but I am aiming to be a doctor of philosophy, hence I am pursuing my PhD studies to fulfil not only their wishes but to reach my full potential and have an impact in the water sector in South Africa and ultimately, globally.

Don’t be afraid to explore, take risks, dream big, and aim higher.

South Africa is safe for all, with improved employment, a country that is crime-free or reduced crime and I believe crime is perpetuated by the high unemployment rate. A country that focuses on more implementation than dotting down ideas and policies.

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