Africa Oil Week is pleased to announce that Sibongiseni ‘Sibobo’ Nyathi will be the recipient of this year’s AOW Student Bursary. AOW will be supporting Sibobo with a year’s tuition and boarding bursary at the Simon’s Town School’s Lawhill Maritime Centre in South Africa.
The Centre has, for the past 25 years, helped to reduce youth unemployment in South Africa by providing secondary school students with maritime knowledge and skills in Grades 10 to 12. Doing so increases their prospects for post-school employment or admission to maritime-related courses at tertiary institutions.
As part of the bursary, Sibobo will be taking on the role of AOW Student Ambassador. He will be attending the conference in Cape Town this November, as well as taking part in Friday’s dedicated Student Programme.
Since the media is one of Sibobo’s many interests, he will be creating video and written on-the-ground reports from AOW. His goal at the conference is to learn as much as possible through informative sessions and networking opportunities with influential delegates. Meanwhile, the goal of AOW is to show Sibobo the full range of career options available and convince him to pursue a career in oil, gas or geoscience!
It’s no secret that the oil and gas sectors often fail to attract the brightest young talent – with the industry perceived as out-of-touch by youth. With the Student Bursary, Africa Oil Week aims to do its part to change this. We would like to thank our Student Programme Sponsor Seatrain for introducing us to Sibobo and to the staff at the STS Lawhill Maritime Centre for their support in these efforts.
Sibobo is 16 years old. Though he is currently a boarder at the STS Lawhill Maritime Centre, his family home is in Gugulethu, a small township near Cape Town. The community in Gugulethu is one affected by gangs and substance abuse, especially among the youth.
Sibobo’s immediate family includes his sister and his mother, who is an English teacher at Masibabane Secondary High School in Kraaifontein, Cape Town. It was Sibobo’s mother who first encouraged him to enrol at the STS Lawhill Maritime Centre. Sibobo also credits her with teaching him his motto – “there is no such thing as I can’t”.
We would like to extend a warm welcome to Sibobo, and hope that he finds value in his time in the Africa Oil Week family.