Mandela Rhodes scholarship: pietermaritzburg student to pursue his passion for farming

2011-11-10 00:00

FOURTH-YEAR agricultural economics student John Flanagan (21) of the University of KwaZulu-Natal Pietermaritzburg campus has been awarded a prestigious Mandela Rhodes scholarship for 2012.

Flanagan, who lives in Mkondeni, is one of 23 post-graduate students from the country’s 29 universities who have been selected to pursue postgraduate studies and take part in leadership development programmes.

Flanagan said, “Getting this scholarship is a huge opportunity for me to meet and network with people from all over the country.

“I inherited my love of farming from my uncles who are farmers, and I enjoy studying the financial side of farming. I love getting to work with the community as we have a project in Imbali called the Hands and Feet Farming Project.

“We get the community involved and share our skills with them. Rolling my sleeves up and getting dirty by planting a seed has always been a passion of mine because it leads to a healthier lifestyle.”

The aim of the Mandela Rhodes Foundation is to create and nurture students who have the potential to become future African leaders.

The foundation’s deputy chief executive officer and scholarships manager, Theresa Laaka Daniels ,said, “The scholars have given examples of how they serve their community showing that they care and are interested in the country and its people.

“Some of them run their own companies and would really benefit from the leadership workshops …

“We are looking for people who embrace the Mandela legacy and we search for them all over the country and assist them in reaching their full potential.”

• thandiwe.jumo@witness.co.za

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