The greatest knowledge comes with knowing that learning is infinite.
These words, by Chartered Accountant and DUT Honourary Graduate Sizwe Nxasana, lingered at the DUT Fred Crookes Sports Centre, Steve Biko Campus, where the first session of the Spring Graduation was held on Thursday 6 September 2012.
Various qualifications were conferred to graduates in the faculties of Applied Sciences, Arts and Design as well as Accounting and Informatics. Sizwe Nxasana congratulated the graduates for reaching this milestone, adding that their academic journey should not end here. “It’s important not to be satisfied with your achievements. Always strive to achieve more. That will inspire others to want to achieve what you also have achieved. The day you stop learning will be the end of your purpose,” he said.
Nxasana spoke at length about the essence of making the right choices in life, making an example about his own adversities and how he came to reach certain milestones. Now a respected and accomplished executive, Nxasana also started at the bottom. Fresh from university, he expected to head straight to an office environment where he would occupy a leading position and reap the fruits of his hard work. On the contrary however, Nxasana found himself working as a Creditor’s Clerk at Unilever. This did not dismay the ambitious Nxasana though. He took to pursuing another qualification and enrolled at the University of South Africa (UNISA).
Attaining his Honours Degree in Accounting Science from the University of South Africa (UNISA) was not a walk in the park. Nxasana failed a couple of times and even contemplated quitting, but with the motivation and consistent support of his wife, he did not relent and ultimately obtained his qualification.
Failure is not a dead end but an additional opportunity to reach one’s goal, he said. He beseeched all the graduates to remain focused because “persistence does pay off.”
In conclusion, Nxasana urged the future working class to bear in mind that “we are all role models and thus how we behave and carry ourselves in public counts”. He said the graduates must not forget to their social responsibility. “You have to play a role in uplifting those who have not had the same privileges as you”, he said.
— Naledi Hlefane