Kwelagano (21) Named BIUST Class of 2018 Top Achiever

Brightest student Mphoentle Kwelagano. PIC: Koketso Kgobge
Brightest student Mphoentle Kwelagano. PIC: Koketso Kgobge

PALAPYE: Mphoentle Kwelagano reaped the fruits of her four-year’s hard work at the Botswana International University of Science and Technology (BIUST) when she raked awards at the University’s graduation ceremony over the weekend.

Kwelagano was amongst the 257 graduates at BIUST’s third graduation ceremony since the University was incepted. The 21-year-old was graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Pure and Applied Mathematics. She is currently doing her first year of her Master’s of Pure and Applied Mathematics at the university.

She was named a joint best overall student alongside Amantle Mothudi and they both received the Chancellors award, sponsored by Stanbic Bank. The duo also received  best students award in the Faculty of Sciences, sponsored by Bofinet and another joint best student award in the Department of Mathematics and Statistical Sciences sponsored by Investec.

Mothudi, who was not around to receive the awards, had her proud mother receive the awards on her behalf . Kwelagano  says she was raised by a single mother in the humble village of Borolong a few kilometres from Francistown. She started her primary school in her native village at Borolong Primary School.

She completed her Primary School Leaving Examinations with a first class at Our Lady of the Desert Primary School in Francistown. She attained a second-class pass in the Junior Secondary Examinations.

She passed her Botswana Government Certificate of Secondary Education (BGCSE) with 45 points at Masunga Senior School. She completed her BGCSE a 15-year-old and was admitted at BIUST with the University’s first intake in 2012.

She was accommodated in Serowe from where she  commuted  to the BIUST campus in Palapye every day.

She looks back at the daunting challenges she faced at a tender age with a proud smile. She said her achievement was a result of dedication and hard work. She said much as her tertiary school journey was tough, she learnt to find positives in the challenges she met. When she counted her sacrifices, she revealed that she lost many friends along the way as a result of her opinionated personality and at times her workaholic character.

She looks at the challenges as a blessing in disguise and she learnt to keep her focus on the prize. “I am happy of the end result, but it was not easy, it was pure hard work.

God gave me the cleverness to find positives out of the negatives and that alone played a huge role in my achievements today,” she said.

“As much as it was strenuous to travel every day, I ended up studying in the bus. I ensured I didn’t stress on situations, instead, I put loads of work in my studies.”

Kwelagano said when she completes her master’s degree studies she might pursue a Post Graduate Diploma outside the country. “I love math, and I want to go all the way (in the subject). I want to attain my PhD then I will see after that,” she said. President Mokgweetsi Masisi, who attended the ceremony, encouraged the graduates to become global solution providers. He called to them to ensure the years they spent studying should reflect on the products they become.

He said the ultimate goal of the government was to ensure BIUST becomes one of the best universities in the world. Of the 2018 graduates 255 were awarded Bachelor’s Degree, including 117 Bachelor of Sciences and 108 Bachelor of Engineering,  while 28 were awarded master’s degrees with a further 19 awarded  Master of Sciences and nine (9)Master of Engineering.

Four Doctor of Philosophy degrees will be conferred.

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