'Nothing meaningful comes for free': Protec top achievers reflect on matric

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We speak to two top achievers, Phindile Xaba and Darshan Bramdev from Kwazulu-Natal, about high school and where they are now. Photo: Supplied/Protec
We speak to two top achievers, Phindile Xaba and Darshan Bramdev from Kwazulu-Natal, about high school and where they are now. Photo: Supplied/Protec

Protec's class of 2021 celebrated an outstanding achievement with a 99.5% pass rate and a 78.2% bachelor pass rate, marking an encouraging start to Protec's 40th anniversary year.

This Non-Profit Organisation, which has pupils from some of the most disadvantaged communities, has 141 high schools serviced by eight branches.

Of those high schools, there were 367 matriculants in 2021 in total, with that class celebrating an overall achievement of 430 distinctions.

News24 spoke to two top achievers, Phindile Xaba and Darshan Bramdev from Kwazulu-Natal, about their high school experience, and where they are now.

Read | 'I am thrilled': Joburg matriculant who is going to Harvard shares what this means to him

'Fondest memories of high school'

With seven distinctions to show for it, Xaba told us that her favourite part of high school was getting good grades. She says that her results made her happy, but the joy it would bring to her parents would make her much more satisfied.

"It would also make me see that my hard work was not in vain, and it would motivate me to be better whenever it comes to my academic career," she said.

"There were times when I felt like matric was too difficult but I am happy that it showed that the hard work I had put into my studies paid off," Xaba added.

While Bramdev, who passed with 96% in English and five distinctions, admitted that his happy memories were far too numerous to mention.

"I enjoyed engaging in discussions with my educators over current affairs. Some of my most cherished moments involved heartfelt discussions with my friends during break times," he said.

"Many of our humorous and light-hearted discussions involved gaming, movies and involved lots of jokes. However, we often discussed our hopes and dreams and offered support to each other throughout the year," he added.

Also read | Redhill School excels with their Class of 2021 International Baccalaureate results

Nothing meaningful comes for free

High school may have been challenging, but Xaba believes that nothing beats hard work and dedication.

"I also learned that nothing truly meaningful comes free to you, but you as a person must work very hard for it. There may be challenges on the way, but you should not allow that to stop you from reaching your goals," added Xaba.


Accept every challenge with enthusiasm

Bramdev believes that accepting every challenge with enjoyment and enthusiasm, while pushing forward towards his success, helped him in high school, even when it came to building friendships.

Xaba knew from her first term's results that she would pass her matric with excellent marks, and she says that motivated her to work even harder by dedicating more hours to her work and making sacrifices that she knew would pay off in the end.

"If I found a subject to be difficult I would firstly ask for help from my teacher or fellow learners, and I would try and expose myself to as much practise as possible, until I understood the subject," she told us.

Must read | Four university degrees that could set you up for future job success

Be consistent throughout

Bramdev shared that being consistent throughout the year and focusing in class is key to excelling in matric. "I set high goals for myself, and I believed that I could achieve them. Therefore, I was cautiously optimistic about my results. However, my marks have surpassed my expectations," he added.

Bramdev made many notes and mind maps when studying a difficult subject and took advantage of online information to understand such topics.

"Be tenacious when studying. Never lose hope and be bold enough to ask for assistance from your educators during class," he advised.

Both Xaba and Bramdev have started their studies, and they feel like the transition from high school wasn't the easiest as they have to be independent now.

Xaba will be studying Computer Science and Information Technology at the University of Kwazulu natal, while Bramdev will be doing Actuarial Sciences at Stellenbosch University.

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