This chemical engineering student’s talent mix and balancing act are a rarity. Added to his studies, the Vaal-born Matomane chairs BSTEP Student Chapter – which he co-founded in 2010 with like-minded peers – and tutors maths to high school kids on Saturdays. Between that, his books and a radio show, he works as an entertainer, a voice-over artist and a radio host.
Building on its initial plan – of helping struggling science, technology and engineering (STE)undergraduates – BSTEP has reached out to learners in Mamelodi, helping them improve their fluency in maths. While the initiative began in 2010, tutoring just eight pupils at Gatang Secondary, it’s grown exponentially to attract 150 pupils a year, from 10 schools. “Our aim is to contribute to the growth and excellence of black pupils,” says this University of Pretoria student.
Matomane credits his STE path and work ethic to the sturdy foundation laid by his mother, who uprooted her children from Sebokeng to live in a garage in the Vaal’s suburbs so they could access good schools. Years later, this man forges on. His degree would be “a stepping stone rather than a destination”, he says referring to the Unplugged and In-charge Young Leaders Organisation, an initiative to broaden quality education “for a brighter tomorrow”. – SMM