MR Foundation Sends The Lift Down To Soshanguve School

This great event was supported by professionals and volunteers attending this year’s BMC Event

By Mashamba Media

MR Foundation (“the Foundation”), as the lighthouse of Hope and Inspiration through educational advocacy and youth development in disenfranchised communities, began the 2024 academic year with an absolute bang, by sending the lift down in Soshanguve, Gauteng.

The Foundation, in collaboration with Shangan Gang, hosted the most anticipated and highly attended Career Coaching and Success Roadmap event held at Tiyelelani Secondary School (“TSS”, in Soshanguve-K, Southwest of Pretoria), the event was streaming live on YouTube (Shangan Gang: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mX_J1Sfl57I, MRF: https://youtube.com/@MR.Foundation?si=rJ_pSvrUIXqu86WY), attended by many seasoned professionals and leaders in corporate South Africa, including other professionals from abroad (participating virtually from Dublin, Ireland and Dubai, United Arab Emirates).


The BMC event was attended by 265 out of the 330 Grade 11 (210) and Grade 12 (120) students at TSS, who described the event as very informative, inspirational and empowering, thought–provoking and fit for purpose, living up to its expectations when it comes to providing practical career coaching and real-life strategies to maximize your days in High School to prepare for life beyond matric certificate. MR Foundation delegates unpacked life beyond matric and shared their career stories, which began from humble beginnings.

BMC (“Beyond Matric Certificate”) is the flagship annual career & life coaching event, featuring professions in several industries and our aim is to help students to develop career roadmap from high school, update vision board and draft 20–years life plans.

KEY HIGHLIGHTS AND REFLECTIONS ON THE BMC 2024 EVENT

The marquee event was described as the first of its kind at TSS and broader Soshanguve community, featuring the Chief Economist at RMB and ABSIP’s Economist of the year 2019, Mr Isaah Mhlanga, who shared his inspirational journey on his meteoric rise from zero to hero. When we watch him speak eloquently on TV and read his economic insights on business day, none of us can tell that his journey began from modest beginnings and he faced similar challenges that many TSS (and township or rural school) students faced such anxiety over access to funding for tertiary studies, poor resources at school, etc. Mr Bright Khumalo (Portfolio Manager at Vestact and Board Member at AltVest Capital) also shared his journey, challenges and triumphs along the path to managing R10bn in assets. Mr Mahlatse Rabothata, (PhD Candidate, Aeronautical Engineer and Lecturer at Wits University), shared valuable tips on the effective study methods that help students succeed, complemented by the inputs from the whole MR Foundation Team of professionals, who also shared experiences of continuing their studies while working full time. Catch up on the full session by clicking on the link below, subscribe and turn on the notification below for real-time updates when relevant content is shared.

Shangan Gang: https://www.youtube.com/@shangangang

MR Foundation: https://youtube.com/@MR.Foundation?si=rJ_pSvrUIXqu86WY

STAKEHOLDER REFLECTIONS AND REAL-TIME FEEDBACK ON THE BMC 2024 EVENT

On behalf of the Educators at TSS, Mr Carlos Maswanganyi, described the event as inspirational for Teachers. Echoing the words of Ms Mokgotlhoa and Mr Moyane, he expressed gratitude to the professionals who shared their lived experiences that helped the students to map out their career paths while leaning on the career stories of the giants and township heroes that walked before them and educators felt more supported to teach with more determination, as the students are more focused.

The deputy principals (“DPs”) at TSS (DP Moyane, RA & DP Mokgothloa, E) hailed the event as revolutionary, high-impact and ground-breaking in the history of TSS, emphasizing that the sustained uptick in students and staff morale is unprecedented, evidenced by clarity of career goals and elevated levels of inspiration to work extra hard, are the direct results of and testament to effectiveness of intervention programs rolled out by MR Foundation. Because of how impactful and informative the session was, DP Moyane even suggested that parents should join to get inspired as well but thankfully, all parents and students elsewhere can access the BMC 2024 recording by subscribing to our channels YouTube, where all educational podcast sessions are posted from time to time. We recently hosted post-matric results roadmap session, which can be accessed on the channels above and we have an upcoming podcast to discuss tips for first year’s university success this coming Saturday, 10 February 2024.

https://youtube.com/@MR.Foundation?si=rJ_pSvrUIXqu86WY

The School Principal, Mr Motlake, wrapped up our reflections by highlighting the real-lasting impact of inspirational and career coaching workshop the learners participated in, held at TSS when the partnership was launched in October 2023. This year’s BMC event builds on that groundwork laid back then, which translated into improved morale and stronger sense of purpose amongst educators and students, evidently resulting in all time high matric performance across the board as the learners showed up for the exams with stronger motivations and elevated determination, which was not the case before MR Foundation visited the school. As a result, TSS recorded the highest pass rate in 2023, about 10% increase in quality passes from 67% up to 76%, which enabled the school to exit section 58b category (under-performing schools) with more bachelor passes than before, the principal attested. The partnership between TSS and MR Foundation is profound and will continue to catapult our learners to greater heights of success, from the tailored psycho-social support, dedicated career coaching, guided vision casting and mentorship for more holistic development of our students as they journey into adulthood. 

KEY PERFORMANCE SNAPSHOT FOR MATRIC STUDENTS AT TSS

The school’s quality performance includes producing 43% (c.50) of bachelors, 35% (c.43) of Diplomas and 22% (c.25) of Higher Certificates, out of the total of 153 learners who wrote the 2023 matric exams. The results reflect improvement in pass rate from 68% to 76%, with multiple distinctions from the top 5 learners (averaging above 70% across all subjects), led by Witness Ntimba with five (5) distinctions including 86% for Accounting, guaranteeing herself admission into the prestigious B.Com (Accounting, CA) program at the University of Johannesburg.

  1. Witness Ntimba, distinctions in: Accounting, Life Sciences, English, Xitsonga and Life Orientation 
  2. Hlungwane Charleen, with distinctions in: Life Sciences, Geography and Xitsonga
  3. Makhubela Hlamulo, with distinctions in: Mathematical Literacy and Life Orientation
  4. Mathole Kgothatso, with distinction in Business Studies
  5. Rakgwale Mimie, with distinction in Tourism Studies

WHAT DID STUDENTS SAY ABOUT BMC 2024? REFLECTIONS FROM THE STUDENTS IN ATTENDANCE

Grade 12 students, Henry Chauke, Joel Chauke and Tsholo Makhubele (students residing in Soshanguve), shared how the career coaching session empowered them to dream bigger and stay away from drugs and crime. The intimate interaction with people they watch on TV and successful black professionals in executive positions in their industries, made them realise that pursuing education and his career goals can help students lead a better life pot matric. Joel Chauke, a student with medical condition, did not only learn strategies to cope with real life challenges but also learnt about the value good matric certificate and he wants to pursue Astrological studies at tertiary level.

Post this BMC2024 career session, Henry was inspired to pursue Cardiology post his matric certificate while Tsholo wants to pursue Dentistry studies, they got to interact with medical doctors, engineers, lecturers, lawyers, chartered accountants, economists and several esteemed professionals who were present, which enlightened the students about perseverance and not giving up when you fail, keeping the right company to accelerate your success. They resolved not follow the examples of the street gods and drug dealers who rule around their communities, because they now believe they can also become successful professionals like the MR Foundation crew.

Our Grade 11 students, had these powerful words to summarise key lessons from BMC 2024; “You need to endure now, and enjoy later”– Cleopetro Phalane, who is inspired to become a family lawyer. Collen Duba, an aspiring Aeronautical Engineer captured lessons so well when he said that “Motivational gets you committed but self-discipline carries you throughout the way.”

WHAT TO EXPECT FROM MR FOUNDATION FOR THE REST OF 2024? 

We have a jam-packed program for 2024, with scheduled quarterly events at TSS (but accessible virtually to other schools, via live broadcast links. We kicked-off the year with BMC 2024 in Soshanguve, which will be followed by full day Career Expo (May 2024) where we will have companies and academic institutions on-site, with certified career coaches addressing the students and university staff (enrolment officers, student advisors, etc) showcasing the diverse learning programs and discuss entrance requirements. The dates for second half of the year, to be confirmed with updates provided via our social media platforms.

We will occasionally host inspirational power–hour sessions (virtually on YouTube/Facebook) where we address key topics and general questions we get from our students, these are on-demand sessions which we will be announced on our social pages and channels, so please subscribe so that you do not miss valuable content. In June 2024, we will be launching the KZN Branch of MR Foundation, with a new school adopted, watch the space for an update and subscribe to the channels to stay relevant. 

The purpose of the BMC (“Beyond Matric Certificate”) event is manifold, with the following covered in depth;

Telling our life stories to inspire learners to begin the academic year with clearer end goals in mind and offer practical strategies that students can use to develop healthy habits that support their career goals.

  1. Unpacking life beyond matric certificate and guide learners on how to produce strong matric certificate, by adopting tried and tested study techniques that helped many of us succeed despite coming from under-resourced schools.  Actionable study tips for studying theoretical and quantitative subjects were shared by Honours, Masters and PhD students from University of Pretoria, Witswatersrand University and University of Johannesburg, including the and Lecturer and Program Coordinator in Engineering & Built Environment at Wits. amongst others.
  1. Discussing the students’ cost/ticket to access quality higher education (i.e., exceptional matric results, good APS) and highlighted multiple funding options available to high performers, including Vice-Chancellor’s entrance scholarships, bursaries, scholarships, NSFAS, educational loans, etc.

WHAT ADVICE DO YOU HAVE TO THE FIRST YEAR TERTIARY STUDENTS? 

We have a dedicated program that will cover this aspect, from how do you transition from high school to university, which coping mechanisms work, what challenges you will face, are there success tips and tricks, how to excel in university, how to stay motivated when times get tough, what social activities to engage in, how to I know I should change the course? Catch us live on Shangan Gang Podcast, on Saturday 10 February 2024.

Passing your matric with flying colours is your golden ticket to the promised land that education has created, so put your focus on studying from day one and preparing for your exams, there is plenty of funding opportunities for the top excellent performers out there. MR Foundation is here to connect excellent performers with funding opportunities to support further studies, once they get accepted in the relevant academic programs in higher education institutions. Kindly reach out to MR Foundation (mhlangarikhotso.foundation@gmail.com) and our dedicated team of experienced professionals will assist you with gladness and love. In fact, the Foundation would love to work very closely with you in 2024 and beyond, to accelerate your turnaround and bring you back on track with your career dreams and aspirations.

MEMBERS AND FRIENDS OF THE FOUNDATION?  

The Foundation (and its social impact programs) is presently self-funded by the founding directors, who are supported by the Foundation’s Dream Team, comprising of amazing senior university students (Wits and UP for now) and established professionals across many industries (Finance & Banking, Healthcare, Legal, Academia, Engineering, Human Resource, Strategy & Consulting, amongst others) volunteering their time and resources to support the vision and mission of MR Foundation. The Foundation received voluntary financial contributions from members and other external stakeholders.

OUR MR DREAM TEAM AND FRIENDS OF THE FOUNDATION PRESENTLY INCLUDE, AMONGST OTHERS:

  • Mr Ntsako Baloyi, (Mech. Engineering Graduate, Data Analyst at Transnet Corporate Centre)
  • Mr Tumi Chauke (Entrepreneur& Co-Host at Shangan Gang Podcast)
  • Ms Prudence Gwegwe, (Educator, TSS)
  • Mr Jafta Khoza (Founder, Shangan Gang Podcast)
  • Mr Bright Khumalo (Portfolio Manager at Vestact Asset Management)
  • Mr Nyiko Kubayi, (Supply Chain Services)
  • Ms Faith Hlungwani (Aviation Specialist, Trainee–Pilot)
  • Mr Vutshila Mathonsi (Actuarial Graduate, Standard Bank Group)
  • Mr Lisbon Mashaba (Co-Founder & Business Developer, Shangan Gang Podcast)
  • Mr Chavelela Mashamba, (Contracts Manager at Pangea Professional Services)
  • Ms Rixongile Mashele, (Masters Student, Wits)
  • Mr Musa Masingi, (Lead: Remuneration & Benefits Logistics Africa at DP World)
  • Mr Carlos Maswanganyi (Educator, TSS)
  • Mr Rhandzu Mkhombo, (Occupational Health and Safety Consultant)
  • Ms Thato Moeng, (University of Pretoria, B.Com Statistics & Data Science)
  • Mr Kevin Mohlala, (Professional Educator)
  • Ms Rebotile Mokomane, (Bachelor of Education, University of Pretoria)
  • Mr Percy Mthombeni, (Business Development Specialist at Milton Resourcing)
  • Mr Nyandano Netshivhazwaulu, (Rock Engineer)
  • Thulani Pride Nghonyama, (Business Intelligence Specialist at FNB).
  • Mr Tiyiselani Nkuna, (HR Specialist)
  • Mr Mahlatse Rabothata, (Academic Advisor, Lecturer & PhD candidate at Wits).
  • Mr Thapelo Sekanka, (Actuarial Scientist, Data Science Manager)

 

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