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Tuesday, July 23, 2024

29-year-old African man who used to work as a security guard to pay his school fees finally graduates university

A young man named Victor Thambe who worked as a security guard to pay his school fees has finally bagged a degree in Education at North West University in South Africa.

Victor, a Zeerust is a South African native who worked as a security officer while studying at the North West University Mafikeng in South Africa.  He graduated from the university with a bachelor’s degree in Education.

He stated that growing up, he dreamed of working in the information technology industry someday. “There came a time when I told myself that I needed to do better. I laid out the three options that would make me successful,” Victor said.

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“It was either I cheat life and do illegal things, I own a business, and the third option was to go to school. Which is the option I chose because it was possible to see through,” he added.




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After he graduated from high school, he worked as a general worker at a grape farm. Victor said while at the farm, he stated that he saved up money to pay for his fees at a security college he enrolled in.

“While at the farm, I saved up money to pay for my fees at the security college I had enrolled at. I completed my Grade E, D, and C between 2015 and 2016,” he said. Victor went on to work as a security officer for a courier company in Zeerust.

“I was earning R2 500 per month, and I used that salary to upgrade my qualifications. I did a Grade B security course, got a driver’s license, a firearm, and a CIT certificate,” he said.

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Victor’s security qualifications later landed him a job in 2016 with the Fidelity Security company as an armed guard at a cash-and-carry supermarket and security officer at the North West University’s Mafikeng campus.

He said that when he was a security officer at the university, he realized that there were opportunities to get an education for free, which prompted him to apply. Victor said he applied for bursaries for admission and he was accepted because had good marks.

“I applied for NSFAS and Funza Lushaka bursary schemes in 2019, and they both admitted me because I have good marks and applied on time,” he said.

However, because he was a security officer when he applied for his studies, he did not stop working as he had a child to support, Victor said he asked the management to give him night shifts so he could attend his classes in the afternoon.

“The new security company deployed at the university was the Mi7 national group. I asked the company’s management to give me night shifts only so that I could attend my classes during the day. After hassles, they eventually agreed, and I could attend classes in the day and work in the evening,” he said.

Victor mentioned that working and studying at the same time was not easy, but he persevered and made it. 

“I would attend classes in the morning and go to work in the evening. As security officers, we are not allowed to sleep at night, so often at times, I’d use that time to complete my readings and assignments,” Victor said.

“It was not easy. I didn’t want to disappoint people who believed in me. I had to do it because I wanted to be successful, I hate failing, so I pushed and finally made it,” he added. He stated that seeing the joy on his family members’ faces during his graduation ceremony was a full-circle moment for him.

“My family was so happy for me. Their hearts were filled with joy, and I could see they were proud of me. My dad was even confused about how many people wanted to take pictures with me. I had to explain to him that I did what most people are scared to do, and I succeeded in it,” he said.

Advising other students, Victor encouraged them that it is never too late to determine their success and change their lives. ”Don’t listen to other people because they will discourage you. You determine your success, and you don’t need anyone else to tell you how to do it,” he said.

Victor mentioned that with the assistance of a good samaritan, he is currently working at a small primary school in a village, where he teaches Grades R and 1.




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