LIFE AFTER MATRIC: Life’s a journey…

2008 marks the year I completed my matric. The year was full of confusion and excitement as anticipated for most matriculants. Personally I felt like a failure. I had not done as well as I anticipated, and I really wasn’t sure what marks to expect. I did send out my applications, as early as from July. In January 2009, we were eager matriculants running to varsity institutions to submit our marks to secure our spots. But I was one of those who were rejected in all places, all because it was full. I thought I wanted to be a Biochemist, or a doctor. The rejection just gave me time off to think, a gap year that was not planned and was the hardest of my life.

Boredom was heavy on me, while listening to friends experiencing first year on social media. I enrolled for a short computer course which I didn’t enjoy but did learn a few things. I travelled a little, but still the emptiness inside, the desire to just go ahead with my studies ate me alive. I am a Christian and this means my Faith is in God. I pray, in good times or bad times, faith keeps me going but at this point that too was hard. Praying, believing. I started to believe every negative word ever spoken to me, I felt I had failed. Not just did I fail myself, but my family too. 

A year later, I’m enrolling at one of the best universities in the country, UCT, studying towards a BSc in Chemistry. I only spent three years at UCT, and though things were perfect, all I had to do was work hard to get my degree, I lost it. The passion, the desire, I hated what I studied. Somehow I felt dead inside. I know its only a few who can relate to this, much as I tried explaining to my parents, they did not get it. All they wanted was for me to hold on and finish. But it wasn’t gonna happen, not that way. I was not even giving 50% into my studies. It wasn’t me. I did my research and really inquired, sought help, and decided to start over. One of the hardest decisions I had to make. And I had a team around me that supported me through the change. 

6years later, in just a couple of months, I will complete my first degree, in Industrial Sociology. I took long, but this too is not a unique story. Many share the same fate. While some finish their degrees well in the prescribed years, others take a while due to a lot of factors that contribute to their progress. For me I needed to find myself, to know who I want to be, and find a way to link my passion with my degree. I’m so glad I persevered through this journey. My degree is not just a paper that marks my academic record, to me it marks the journey, since 2010 when admitted at UCT, to this day as I complete it via the University of Pretoria.

LAM was born through this journey. Education is a huge elephant that cannot be left to the teachers and the government alone. We are here to offer support in the best way we know how. Everyone has a different tale, but regardless we all need someone to offer us help when we need it.

Original Story from Kefiloe Bopape’s Blog Page.

Related Articles

Dignity for International Migrants

Organisations collaborated on a discussion document to submit to the Department of Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation (DPME) for the published International Migration Green Paper. The aim of this collaboration was to provide a unified voice on what the issues and solutions civil society has in regard to the aforementioned pieces of legislation.