This week the Education Ambassadors SA Team caught up with Dumisani Collins Morgan Motai, born and bred in Senekal in the Free State. Collins is currently a lecturer at a Public TVET college and a masters student at the University of the Free State with an extreme passion for education. Read his inspiring story below.
My name is Dumisani Collins Morgan Motai and I am 28 years old. I was born and Bred in Senekal in the Free State. I am the third and last born child of my parents. I did my primary school at Mohalatlali Public school in Senekal Matwabeng, I then proceeded to Rehotse Intermediate School and completed my Grade 12 at E.E Monese Secondary school.
One of the challenges I encountered when I was growing up is the fact that most of my friends were in multiracial schools and that made me feel like I am not intelligent enough to be in the best school as I was in a public school. At some point, I even thought I will not be accepted at any university. The most important advice I got from my father was that if I believed in myself I will go far in life regardless of the school I went to. I took those words to heart and kept them as a reminder to never underestimate myself.
I am currently a lecturer at a Public TVET college in the Free State and a masters student at the University of the Free State.
The one thing that I love about myself is the passion I have for education. I believe that through education people can transform their lives. I also like my great sense of humour because whenever I am around others, I make them feel good even when they are going through the worst things ever.
When I was in my final year at university I was at the verge of dropping out as my parents ran out of money to support my studies. This was a big challenge for me as I had to depend upon family members and friends for survival. I finally managed to complete my degree through the help of my brother and my sister who were the sole breadwinners for my family.
What are you most proud of?
The proudest moment in my life was when I was awarded ‘best lecturer’ in the college that I work for after only two years of being in the college. It was a priceless moment and one that I will forever be grateful for. In addition, I was recently nominated among all masters students of the Faculty of Education University of Free State to present my paper at a conference.
What, in your opinion, are the most important factors to keep in mind to make it in your career or life in general?
One tip that I would like to give to the youth of South Africa is to know who you are and where you come from. They must remember that we are not the same, we are from different family backgrounds and irrespective of those circumstances , God has given each and everyone of us special talents that we can utilize to become successful.
In the next five years, I see myself as a full-time researcher who will be doing research on improving the lives of marginalized people through education.
If I were to become the minister of education I would ensure that all schools in South Africa offer the same type of education, receive the same resource and are all the same regardless of the demographics of the school.
Are there any specific people or organisations that you look up to and draw inspiration from and why?
I honestly look up to my mother, she has never worked a proper job or received any formal education but through her entrepreneurial skills she managed to feed us and she managed to support me until the late years of my varsity education. That I call resilience because no matter the problem my siblings and I encountered, my mother will always have a plan.
Are there any inspiring projects which you’re involved in?
At the moment I am involved in a Christmas outreach program where myself and a group of friends get together to provide meals and Christmas clothes for children from underprivileged communities. I am also a co-author of a research journal article that deals with social justice education for marginalized learners and it is due for publication early 2019.
Lastly, what advice would you give to others out there looking to follow in your footsteps?
Never give up in life and never compare yourself to others. You were born alone and you are unique, if another person becomes successful do not compare yourself with them because your time is coming.
Lastly if you choose education as a suitable career make sure that you are really passionate and willing to empower others.
How can the public contact you?
For learners/students/people who want to further their studies they may contact me on Facebook: Collins Dumisani.
Thank you for sharing your inspirational story with our community, Collins. We wish you all the best. God bless!
If you would also like to see your inspirational story published in our publication, email: firstname.lastname@example.org