KZN top achiever receives bursary worth R1.3m at science fair

Pinky Jiyane. (Photo: Supplied)
Pinky Jiyane. (Photo: Supplied)

Ongoye High School’s Grade 12 top achiever from Kwadlangezwa in the north coast of KwaZulu-Natal, was crowned the overall winner of the Eskom Expo International Science Fair 2019.

Pinky Jiyane (18) has chosen to go study in Berlin, Germany after winning two bursaries at the Eskom Expo international fair which was held in Boksburg, Johannesburg.

The purpose of the competition is to stimulate innovative scientific and engineering projects aimed at solving issues experienced in participants’ communities.

Pinky received an International Technical Apprenticeship bursary worth R1.3 million valid for three years to study in Berlin, Germany. She also received a bursary for her to further her studies in electrical engineering at the Durban University of Technology.

“I created a unique electricity meter box which made me win. I have applied to do engineering next year after my matric, but I have decided to not let go of the opportunity to go and study overseas, it is a once in a lifetime opportunity.”

Pinky started entering the competition when she was in Grade 10 and even though she had challenges of the school not having the necessary resources, she soldiered on.

Her being in a disadvantaged school made her hungrier for the opportunities she would get at entering the competition.

Pinky told Move! that she had a very tough time when she first entered the competition because she did not have money and resources to do her projects, but luckily she was assisted by her then life science teacher who is now on retirement.

In Grade 10 when she entered the expo she won regionally and then went on to compete nationally where she won a science kit for her school and a gold medal. Unfortunately, last year she did not do so well nationally.

This year she entered again and managed to come out on top nationally and with the help of her mathematics teacher, Musawenkosi Khumalo, who made sure all the paperwork needed was done that she attended workshops around the area.

“I used to make use of the science kit I won the first time that I won because my school does not have a functional laboratory and that is what made me hungry to win a science kit worth R25 000 in the competition.”

For the past three years Pinky had to come up with different and unique ways with her science electricity projects and it was not an easy thing to do.

The challenges that she faced were financial problems, but overall, she has been doing exceptionally well in her science subjects.

Ongoye High School recently celebrated and honored her achievements by doing a special ceremony for her, present at the ceremony was the mayor of King Cetshwayo District Nonhle Mkhulisi and KZN Department of Education District Director, David Chonco.

Principal of Ongoye High School Sibongile Mlenzana told Move! that she is exceptionally proud of the aspiring young electrical engineer and that she is proud of the young lady for representing women in her area.

Speaking to Move! she said that she knows that Pinky will excel in her final exams and get the five distinctions she is required to get to go overseas.

“Pinky is not the first learner to have won the Expo from our school there is also another former learner who is currently doing her third year in Germany too. This comes to show that the schools science and mathematics department is doing their job exceptionally well.”


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