Kolomela Mine and SPU collabrate to create opportunities for Postmasburg matriculants

Rewind to the beginning of 2022, and the 2021 matriculants from three local high schools in Postmasburg faced a dismal future despite having successfully passed and having the necessary scores to study at a university.

Except for the resources to finance their studies.

Fast-forward to 5 March 2022. At Tafel Lager Park in Kimberley, moments away from Sol Plaatje University (SPU), students enthusiastically watch their first live rugby match, between the Griquas and the Bulls.

A momentous moment for the same 22 matriculants, who are now Sol Plaatje University students and starting to experience all aspects of student life. It is a fairy tale turned reality as the Postmasburg first-year students begin their journey at one of the most vibrant universities on the continent, SPU.

The awarding of the full bursaries to students was made by Kumba’s Kolomela Mine, who generously awarded bursaries that covered a stipend, books, accommodation, and tuition fees.

Mine general manager Masala Mutangwa explains that the mine is fully committed to “assisting our matriculants in any way possible to attend school and obtain a qualification to promote education in the Tsantsabane area to increase their chances of employment”.

He says no matriculant of 2021 from the area’s schools will stay at home if they have been admitted to a South African university or college.

In making good on his promise, SPU was invited to hold an open day in the town in March 2022, where the University assessed the matriculants’ results. Students with the best admission point scores were offered enrolment in selected SPU programmes.

The introduction to one important facet of university life through rugby was a milestone for the young students that proved recreation at a university is much more than partying on weekends. 

It was clear that the game resonated with the Postmasburg students beyond the light-hearted and fun moments of the game and held a deeper meaning for them:

• It’s not about winning or losing a competition. It’s about beating the doubt within yourself and knowing that you are one step closer to your goals at the end of each day.

• It doesn’t always have to be about winning. As long as you enjoy it and put everything in, you are also a winner.

• Teamwork and collaboration can achieve beautiful things. Unity is strength.

• Push yourself because no one is going to do it for you.

• Alone, we can do so little. Together, we can do so much. None of us is as smart as all of us.

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