Engen Maths and Science School attendee, Jubilee Tinomudaishe Dongo believes that you “do not stop when you are tired, you stop when you are done,” a life philosophy that ensured the Lenasia South learner bagged nine distinctions in matric.  

In another year of considerable disruption, Jubilee overcame the odds to notch up an impressive 96% for mathematics and 88% for science, results that have secured her a place at the University of the Witwatersrand to study Actuarial Science.  

An alumnus of Masibambane College in Orange Farm, Jubilee is determined to fulfill her dream of becoming a fully-fledged actuary.  

“I believe I have what it takes to make a mark in the world,” she says confidently. 

With an intense workload brought on by learning gaps from a disrupted grade 11 year in 2020, Jubilee says has realised that she can do anything, regardless of the challenges. 

Reflecting on a tough 2021, she and her classmates missed out on a number of school-defining events that many teenagers dream about. 

“The pandemic also robbed us of a Valentines Ball and a Matric dance, which was something I had been looking forward to since grade 8.” 

And advice for the matric class of 2022? 

“Be disciplined, work hard and be consistent with your schoolwork,” is Jubilee’s emphatic reply, also offering that learner’s “make use of your teachers and never be too afraid to ask for help.”  

Jubilee has high praise for her family for their unwavering encouragement. 

“They have always been my support system and motivated me to be the best that I can be.”  

But it was the Engen Maths and Science School supplementary classes on Saturdays, says Jubilee, that provided her with crucial insights in Maths, Physical Sciences and English and “really assisted me to reach my full potential.”  

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“These extra lessons in my grade 11 and 12 years helped me cover the gaps that were created by the teaching time lost due to the pandemic enforced school closures.  

“I was also exposed to different teachers at the EMSS who helped me understand concepts that I did not understand at school, whilst also revising concepts already learnt at school.”   

The Engen Maths and Science Schools have run for over 30 years, and offer underprivileged grade 10-12 learners free supplementary Maths, Science and English tuition on Saturdays at nine locations across South Africa. 

These include Cape Town (classes are held at Belgravia and Manzombotho High), Port Elizabeth, East London, Cala and Johannesburg, and in KwaZulu-Natal where classes are hosted at Fairvale High School, Ganges High School, Howard College, and Mangosuthu University of Technology. 

The 429-strong Engen Maths and Science School matric class of 2021 attained a 77% overall pass rate of which 64% attained bachelor passes. 

Engen’s manager of Transformation and Stakeholder Engagement, Dr James Nyawera explains that the EMSS programme focuses specifically on providing extra tuition in “gateway” subjects such as mathematics and science; subjects which are considered critical in addressing the country’s technical and engineering skills shortage as well as spurring economic growth and development.  

“The EMSS programme seeks to harness the potential of talented young people in difficult circumstances and to also contribute to the pool of scarce skills in the country,” comments Nyawera. 

“Starting off 34 years ago as Engen Saturday Schools, EMSS remains central to Engen’s efforts to contribute to the growth and transformation of South Africa,” continues Nyawera, adding that “the programme has worked tirelessly to help transform young underprivileged people’s lives, with a focus of creating a diverse and vibrant workforce.” 

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Nyawera says Engen is incredibly proud of Jubilee and all the EMSS learners who completed matric in 2021, despite extremely trying circumstances. 

“Well done to all for showing true grit and determination! It is Engen’s ultimate reward to help set talented people up to pursue stimulating careers that won’t only benefit them personally, but also their families and the broader economy of South Africa. 

“Engen is committed to building tomorrow’s leaders and if we want to ensure that the youth of tomorrow are prepared for a rapidly changing world, we need to ensure that they have the right mix of skills, for them to reach their full potential,” concludes Nyawera. 

Engen congratulates the Engen Maths and Science School class of 2021 and offers a well-deserved round of applause to all the learners and teachers.