Amenta Sibi is studying MBChB (medicine)

30th October 2018


Amenta Sibi is from the Eastern Cape. She is studying MBChB (medicine) at the University of Cape Town (UCT).

“The lack of interest, skills and passion in our primary school educators make many learners hate the subject from an early age. Better qualified and trained educators (who are skilled in the subject) must be employed in the primary schools.”

Tell us a bit about your school.

I completed Matric at King Edward High School in Matatiele, Eastern Cape. King Edward is a well-organised, well-managed school with good discipline. It’s a public school with committed teachers. I did not encounter many challenges. My parents assisted with the few problems that I had in mathematics as they are both qualified mathematics teachers.

Why did you enjoy science and mathematics?

I enjoyed mathematics and science from a very early age. I was proud when I won the trophy for the best mental maths learner of the district in Grade 6 and represented the province.

Why do you think some people have a problem with maths and science? What would you do to solve the problem?

Basic skills (like knowing multiplication tables) are not encouraged in our country. Overuse of calculators is a problem. The lack of interest, skills and passion in our primary school educators make many learners hate the subject from an early age. Better qualified and trained educators (who are skilled in the subject) must be employed in the primary schools. The foundation is very important.

Any tips for learners in Grades 11 and 12?

Practice mathematics by writing not by reading. It is a ‘doing’ subject not a reading subject.

What inspires you?

My parents and their support, skills, passion and interest in education inspired me in all my achievements.

What advice do you have for matriculants who have to apply for places at higher education institutions?

If you work hard in mathematics – and with the support of your teachers – it is an interesting and easy subject. Remember, a good pass in mathematics and physical science will open all the doors for a brighter future. It will also attract fund providers to support you financially.

Why did you choose the course you are studying now?

My interest in science subjects from a very early age, an interest in dealing with human life. my ability to handle pressure situations, and the need in my community made me to choose a medical career.

Where do you see yourself 10 years from now?

I wish to complete my MBChB in 5 years from now and wish to specialise in cardiology and serve the needy people selflessly.

Understanding excellence – what makes an achiever?

You can achieve anything with hard work, commitment, interest, time management, setting achievable goals, and living a healthy life.

A message to South African youth?

Education can solve most of your problems but if you perform well in mathematics and physical science you are already safe in your life.