First Graduate in Family Sets Precedent for Siblings

The road to academic excellence has been a demanding but also rewarding one for Nobuhle Khuzwayo, one of the five highest achievers in the Faculty of Arts.

Khuzwayo graduated with a Diploma in Media Studies on Tuesday, 14 May 2019 at the King Bhekuzulu Hall, KwaDlangezwa Campus. She was accompanied by her mother, brothers and cousin. Her father was unfortunately unable to attend his daughter’s special day due to being ill.

“Obtaining this qualification is history in the making, even more so for my family (as) I am the first one to obtain a qualification (at home),” explained Khuzwayo.

Khuzwayo faced various challenges during her journey towards obtaining her qualification. Among these was losing her grandfather whom she adored.  In hindsight, she admitted that these adversities moulded her character and ultimately paved the way for her to fulfil her dreams.

She grew up in a family of six which was dependent on the single income of her mother, who works as a cleaner at one of the Bed and Breakfasts in Eshowe. To think her mother would be able to afford paying her university fees was a far cry from the truth. Her fate would later be decided by the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) which, fortunately, accepted her application for funding.

Khuzwayo arrived at UNIZULU eager to change the course of her life. Even the naysayers who told her that chances of passing at the university were very slim could not deter her. She set out to prove that with willpower, one can move mountains.

A self-proclaimed hard worker, she dedicated at least three hours daily solely to going over her work. If it meant she had to wake up at two or three in the morning, she would do it. “I knew the first day that I enrolled that I wanted to do this in record time. That is why I decided there and then that I was going to work myself to the bone. I am a hard worker; I always put extra effort in everything that I do. My excellent results only came through hard work and dedication,” the graduate noted. Her goal was to see her parents proud. She was especially determined to fulfil her mother’s dream to see her children surpass her highest qualification: a matric certificate.

Khuzwayo’s insistence to understand the operations of our immediate world as well as her passion for reading and writing encouraged her to pursue a career in media. She is currently registered for a Bachelor of Arts degree (dual major) at UNIZULU.

Her advice to other students is that perseverance is key. Even the seemingly smallest of accomplishments soon pave the way for bigger success.

– Precious Shamase


Nobuhle Khuzwayo graduated with a Diploma in Media Studies on Tuesday, 14 May 2019. She also received a special gift from the Office of the Vice-Chancellor, Prof Xoliswa Mtose, for being among the top five graduates in the Faculty of Education.