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Playing an instrumental role in the lives of  learners is the call that Ambassadors are tasked with. That is what Ambassador Emisang Machedi and colleague Onkemetse Mokgosi accomplished at Mncube Secondary School in Soweto, Mofolo. Fortune Mhlanga, a learner coming from Kwa-Zulu Natal, arrived in Johannesburg to face a trial of perseverance and determination. It was in Grade 11 when Fortune and Emisang met and Fortune’ s dreams at the time were that of simply surviving life. He made a declaration that all he envisaged was to be a policeman. Ambassador Emisang later came to the realisation that Fortune worked as a security guard at night and attended  classes in the morning. The young man stayed alone and had to make ends meet. Emisang also noted that he was one of the learners always asking questions in class, he stayed behind after school to probe the subject content further and in term 2 he became the top performing learner in class, surpassing all his fellow students. Emisang was touched by the circumstances in this learners’ life. Along with a co-ambassador they began to support Fortune in his endeavours. Through his own personal connections, Emisang assisted to enrol the student in Saturday lessons, to help augment and enlarge his understanding of the subject. He helped him with meals and his mom paid rent for accommodation. Following the intervention of his teachers his performance improved dramatically. In the
second term of Grade 11, he achieved 34% in Physical Sciences and 26% in Mathematics. By the end of the year in Grade 11 his marks had improved to 66% in Physical Sciences and 71% in Mathematics. He wrote Matriculated with 95% in Physical Sciences and 91% in Mathematics. Exiting his secondary education with exemplary marks, Fortune decided to continue to enrol in the field of Physics. He went on to pursue a BSc in Science at the University of Witwatersrand and studied towards Honours degree. Recently, He went on to pursue a BSc in Science at the
University of Witwatersrand and studied towards Honours degree. Recently, he joined the SA-CERN (Conseil Europeen pour la Recherche Nucleaire which translates in English to European Council for Nuclear Research) Consortium for a Master’s program in particle Physics in Switzerland the European Organization for Nuclear Research. Fortune has come a long way to find himself and his true calling. Thankfully, he was received by the warm hands of TEACH Ambassadors who helped him to steer a path filled with success and immense achievement. His life trajectory was changed from aspiring to be a policeman to being a physicist. Well done Fortune! You have defied the odds.

Fortune Mhlanga

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