My name is Dineo Mogashoa from Mhluzi Middelburg. I have always loved science and dreamed of becoming a scientist from a very young age. I knew I had to work very hard in school in order to make this dream come true because my family was unable to pay for my tertiary education. It was at this point that I applied for the Anglo community scholarship. This scheme was kind enough to fund my studies from the year 2014 through to 2017, covering both my undergraduate (Bachelor of Science Environmental Sciences) and my honours (Bachelor of Science Ecology) degrees. The academic scholarship received also included accommodation, a food allowance and a stipend for basic needs. As an individual from a disadvantaged background tertiary education was always something that felt out of reach. It is often overlooked that even if one’s fees are paid for, it is almost impossible for young South Africans to support themselves while studying. Because of this my aspirations were always equal by a feeling of anxiety.
The Anglo Community Scholarship not only took these fears away, but opened the door for me to focus on my studies with an equal footing in an arena that is often unavailable to so many in my position. Having completed my studies I was offered a field research assistant position on Marion Island in the sub-Antarctic under SANAP (South African National Antarctic Programme). The programme is an initiative by the department of environmental affairs in collaboration with higher learning institutions which seeks to understand the biological processes and changes that occur on the island. It is through this information that scientist are able to model/predict changes that may be expected in similar environments in the world. I look forward to taking on new challenges and opportunities upon my return to South Africa in May when this post ends. I am eternally grateful to Anglo because none of this would have been possible with your help.