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Top learners head to Cape Town and Harvard to commence student life

The Engen Maths and Science Schools (EMSS) is a national initiative that addresses key skills shortages in the engineering and technical fields by providing after hours Maths and Science tuition to learners who show an advanced aptitude in the subjects. 
Engen’s manager of Corporate Social Investment, Mntu Nduvane says the company is delighted to provide many bright young learners the springboard to pursue their dreams of working in maths and science related fields.
“Many learners in the programme had to overcome great socio-economic hardships to achieve their high results. We are proud of the Class of 2016 and wish them all the best in their tertiary studies and future careers,” he says.
Hailing from KwaZulu-Natal and an attendee of the EMSS at Mangosuthu University of Technology, Sasasa Dlamini achieved an 89% average for matric, with distinctions in all his subjects. A learner at Westville Boys High School, Sasasa is bound for Harvard University in the United States to study economics or politics.
“My maths and science distinctions got me to Harvard, and will give me the opportunity to change my world,” says Sasasa. “My EMSS teachers always taught me that I could do more. And since both economics and politics are premised on changing the world, perhaps I can repay their faith in me by creating the means to solving challenges and employing thousands of people. Choosing which subject to study will be tough, but I’m really excited to get this opportunity.”
Another EMSS alumni destined for university is Athini Mqolora. Athini attended Wongalethu High School in Mdantsane, East London achieving an impressive overall average of 88% with distinctions in Maths, Science and English.  Athini who lost her mother to cancer in 2007 and was raised by her aunt, is studying Medicine this year at UCT, with a view to specialising in Oncology. 
“EMSS exposed us to so much more and our tutors really believed in us,” she says. “I had to work really hard to achieve my results, but this is just the beginning,” she adds. “I never dreamed that one day I would get to own my own surgery and tackle cancer, but thanks to Engen, I have the confidence and opportunity to go on and make this dream a reality.”
Olwethu Bitterhout, the son of a municipal worker and stay-at-home mum, achieved an overall aggregate of 85% for matric in 2016 with distinctions in Maths, Science and English, and A’s in every other subject. Born and raised in Uitenhage where he attended Solomon Mhlangu High School, Olwethu caught the bus to Nelson Mandela University to attend the EMSS, which - he says - has given him the skills to tackle problems.
“I couldn’t have got the distinctions without the help and encouragement of the super-professional teachers, and two hours studying every day!” Olwethu maintains. “I believe that studying in a group brings a variety of minds and approaches to problem solving.” 
Olwethu will enrol in mechanical engineering at UCT with a view to changing his world. “I would love to invent a process or approach to solve water management challenges. Engen has put a lot of faith in me and I won’t let them or myself down,” he says.
Unathi Bhodlingwe, the national top learner in the EMSS Class of 2016, attended Umlazi High School in Durban and EMSS classes at Mangosuthu University of Technology. She scored an impressive 93% for mathematics, 92% for science and an overall average of 91%. Unathi has enrolled to study accounting at the University of Cape Town this year.
Mntu Nduvane, Engen’s manager of Corporate Social Investment says the company is extremely proud of all the learners who participate in the EMSS programme. “Now go and make a success of your careers and make a difference,” urges Nduvane.
By continuing to grow the minds and talents of the future, the Engen Math and Science Schools (EMSS) initiative is changing our world, helping people to explore new horizons and gain new experiences: proof once again that as a company, Engen is with you on your journey.
EMSS exposes learners from grades 10 to 12 to high-quality teachers, tuition and educational materials. Currently, Engen supports nine Maths and Science schools across South Africa. In 2016, 1 881 learners participated in EMSS classes nationally, of which 586 wrote the Grade 12 National Senior Certificate exams, achieving an impressive 94% pass rate. Among many of those who will go on to study for careers of their choice, the top achievers met with Engen’s Corporate Social Investment heads at Engen’s headquarters in Cape Town, to celebrate their outstanding achievements.