SELEBI-PHIKWE: Completing Form 5 students at Selebi-Phikwe Senior Secondary School (SPSSS), who recently attended a two-week bootcamp, have declared the event a success.
The students said they were exposed to quite a number of aspects that would help them take a step forward as they join the mainstream community.
One of the students, Thabo Tito, 17, described the bootcamp as amazing.
“I was hesitating to attend the bootcamp because I couldn’t wait to close and go home. I thought it was another way the teachers were trying to spoil our excitement by making us come to school again and teach us about alcohol abuse and teenage pregnancy, but that wasn’t the case,” he said. Tito said they were given interpersonal skills about life after completing senior school, which included self-awareness, character-building and discipline. He added that they were also taught to have passion in whatever they do and also to be creative thinkers who are able to generate ideas that would help them create their own employment. Tumelo Dikgang, 19, said she was now aware of the negative pressures people are going to impose on them as students, as they would be spending most of their time interacting with all kinds of characters in the community. She added that they had been taught to develop personal traits that will guard against negative behaviour and enable them to make wiser decisions and choose people that will help them prosper. “I am now aware that I must have a stand in life to achieve my goals and be in control of my own life,” she said. Dikgang said that they were also given an insight into the fact that there are other opportunities to dwell on even if some do not do well in the upcoming Botswana General Certificate of Secondary Education (BGCSE) results. She added that some of those opportunities include being a young entrepreneur, which is critical due to the shortage of formal employment. Former students can also opt to volunteer in different government sectors while waiting to pursue their personal dreams.
Former headgirl, Minenhle Mavuma, who also attended the bootcamp, said the experience was an impressive occasion that opened students’ minds to be independent. Mavuma said students gained skills in emotional intelligence and being patient prior to achieving personal dreams such as finding scholarship and employment.
She also urged her fellow former peers to learn from their mistakes and be mature enough to make wise decisions. “Do what you love, but the right thing. Never let a single mistake make you a failure but rather make you wiser,” she said.School head, Abraham Senabjwe, said 811 students sat for the BGCSE examination and from all those, 486 attended the bootcamp.
“Some parents did not want their children to attend the bootcamp because they thought they were only going to engage in mischief,” he said.
Senabjwe said that for some students, issues of social values, emotional intelligence, work ethics and entrepreneurship, health and wellness, alcohol abuse and sexual behaviour are deemed boring and hence they opted out.