Slice of life: A better life, module by module

One of the big bosses at work came through reception on his way out at the end of the day, and saw me reading a textbook and making notes. He was in a rush, but he stopped to ask me what I was doing.

I explained that I was working on an assignment because I was studying through correspondence at Unisa. He looked surprised and kept asking questions: “What are you studying for?” and “Why are you studying?” He then left for the parking lot, but he came back soon afterwards and told me how much he admired my efforts and that I should keep on going.

That meant so much to me — he saw me as more than just the security guard at reception. He saw how much potential I had, and how much I believed in my dreams.

I’ve always loved learning. When I was in high school in the rural areas, I wore a full suit and tie to class everyday. I always did my homework and was the neatest learner. If my family had had the funds to help me further my education then I would have been a principal by now.

Not having a tertiary education stopped me from doing so many things, but time and age are not factors for me; I will catch up and progress.


I started studying in 2012 but I had to stop for two years because I couldn’t afford to pay for the modules. But I’m going to be a teacher one day and I’m going to keep educating myself for the rest of my life.

I truly believe that my life’s purpose is to give knowledge to young people, so it’s important to me to achieve this goal. — David Matlou (49), as told to Mashadi Kekana

Subscribe to the M&G

These are unprecedented times, and the role of media to tell and record the story of South Africa as it develops is more important than ever.

The Mail & Guardian is a proud news publisher with roots stretching back 35 years, and we’ve survived right from day one thanks to the support of readers who value fiercely independent journalism that is beholden to no-one. To help us continue for another 35 future years with the same proud values, please consider taking out a subscription.

Related stories

Miss Rona’s teaching the 4IR lessons

Schooling is stuck in the 1950s, but technology must be blended with the basics of education

The language of Afrikaans is not the problem

English is a valuable resource, but we cannot continue to promote it at the expense of the indigenous languages — including Afrikaans

South Africa prioritises fossil fuels over clean energy in post-Covid-19 recovery packages

The country is among the G20 countries who have invested in electricity produced from coal, oil and gas at the cost of addressing climate change

Challenges and opportunities for telemedicine in Africa

Telemedicine in Africa is currently limited by the availability of basic infrastructure, but, considering the lack of doctors in rural areas, it is a vital component in addressing the continent’s healthcare needs

Children will learn under lockdown

Just what they’ll learn or be taught will be outside the curriculum, which may have to happen later

Schools to close for a month due to Covid infection surge — Ramaphosa

The academic year will extend into 2021 in a ‘deliberately cautious approach’ as president confirms South Africa has world’s fifth-highest Covid-19 infection tally
Advertising

Ingonyama Trust Board moves to retrench staff

More than 50 workers at the Ingonyama Trust Board have been issued section 189 notices

Tito needs the IMF, South Africa doesn’t

The IMF loan is given with false motivation — to provide political cover for entrenched neoliberalism and deep cuts in the public service

No proof of Covid-19 reinfection, yet

Some people report testing positive for Covid-19 after initially having the disease and then testing negative. Scientists are still trying to understand if this means that reinfection is possible
Advertising

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…

The best local and international journalism

handpicked and in your inbox every weekday