“Those who complete the course will do so only because they do not, as fatigue sets in, convince themselves that the road ahead is still too long, the inclines too steep, the loneliness impossible to bear and the prize itself of doubtful value.” ― Thabo Mbeki

Celine Meyers


Technology & Innovation

Organisation / Company

University of the Witwatersrand


Celine Meyers, 29, is an institutional researcher and BI analyst at the University of the Witwatersrand, responsible for analysing data to inform strategic decision-making. Her job involves collecting, processing, interpreting and managing institutional data. As part of her profession, she designs and implements surveys, generates reports and presents important insights to the university leadership and relevant stakeholders. Her work supports initiatives aimed at improving student success and institutional effectiveness. Continuing her passion for digital migration studies, Celine is doing ongoing research that examines the experiences of African migrant women in South Africa. This research seeks to explore how technology can be leveraged to provide women with greater agency and support. Celine completed her PhD in sociology from the University of Johannesburg. During her honours year, she received the Palgrave Macmillan Book Prize for producing the best research study. Celine gives back to her community by starting a fund to support other students facing financial hardships. She plans to expand her fund, continue mentoring scholars and influence policy and practise through her research.



University of Johannesburg, PhD in Sociology

University of Johannesburg, MA in Sociology 

University of Johannesburg, Bachelor of Arts Hons in Sociology (Cum Laude)

Nelson Mandela University, Bachelor of Arts


One achievement that stands out to me is my academic journey marked by several scholarship awards, academic distinctions, and the completion of my PhD at a young age (28) despite facing various challenges. Throughout my higher education career, I maintained a consistent presence on the dean’s list and received the Palgrave Macmillan Book Prize for producing the best research study during my honours year.

Despite navigating personal obstacles, I persevered and achieved academic excellence, graduating cum laude at every level of my postgraduate studies. One of the most fulfilling aspects of my academic journey has been the opportunity to share my knowledge and mentor others. Under my supervision, my honours students have excelled, with several receiving distinctions.

I also take immense pride in being able to give back to my community by starting a fund to support other students facing financial hardships. This initiative reflects my belief in the transformative power of education and my commitment to creating opportunities for others to succeed. I also personally funded a relative’s first year of study and consistently supported her and others’ education financially and with resources, embodying the principle that “charity begins at home”.

Through these experiences, I have learned the importance of resilience, determination, and paying it forward. My academic achievements have taught me that with dedication and hard work, any obstacle can be overcome. Additionally, mentoring and supporting others in their educational pursuits reinforce the value of empowerment and collaboration in achieving collective success.


Several mentors and role models have influenced my journey, each playing a different role in shaping my path and guiding me through various stages of my career and personal development. My parents have been my primary source of inspiration and support. Growing up in a low-income community in Port Elizabeth, they worked tirelessly to provide for our family and emphasised the importance of education (they never had the opportunity to study and reach their dreams). Their resilience and unwavering belief in my potential motivated me to pursue my dreams, despite the many challenges we faced. They instilled the values of hard work, perseverance, and the importance of giving back to the community.

Throughout my academic journey, my lecturers and supervisors at Nelson Mandela University and the University of Johannesburg have been instrumental in my success. They provided not only academic guidance but also personal support, helping me navigate the complexities of postgraduate research and balancing my multiple roles. Their encouragement and constructive feedback pushed me to excel and to believe in the significance of my research. Their example inspired me to contribute to my community and to pursue a career where I could make a meaningful difference. Finally and most importantly, my faith in God has been instrumental in my success.