The techno-savvy Mohapi is DUT’s 2016 Microsoft Student Partner (MSP), is in the USA from 14 July 2017, after being selected by the United States embassy to study until May 2018.
MSP is a programme by Microsoft spanning from more than 100 countries across different regions, selected MSP’s become technology leaders in their communities and campuses and are entrusted with the responsibility of sharing the exclusive knowledge gained from the programme with their peers.
He is currently studying at the Northern Virginia Community College, enjoying his classes, student life and sight-seeing.
Last year, he took a two-week holiday period, in December 2017, from his classes and toured the West Coast which included San Diego, Las Vegas, Chicago and Los Angeles for Christmas.
“My holiday was incredible. I spent Christmas day in the Santa Monica Pier Amusement Park. I couldn’t believe I was in the city of my dreams at such a young age. I also went on a Hollywood bus tour where I got to see celebrity homes, Beverly Hills and the Hollywood Walk of Fame,” he said ecstatically.
To date, he has visited 13 of the 50 states. In Las Vegas, he thoroughly enjoyed the Las Vegas strip and in Chicago, he went during the coldest time of the year. “There was too much snow and it was extremely windy. But I managed to visit some incredible sites such as the Cloud Gate. I enjoyed the experience even though I caught terrible flu,” said Mohapi.
In terms of his studies this year, 2018, he added that the new semester was far more challenging than he had anticipated. “I’m learning new things and acquiring incredible new skills. I feel that through my studies alone, I have grown intellectually and personally, and I’m better equipped to tackle the industry when I return home. I’m still managing to keep the high standard that my parents are so proud of,” he chuckled.
Mohapi also started an internship at an NGO called The Family Place, based in Washington, DC, in mid-February, this year. It entails conducting research for the organisation and revamping and redesigning their website.
Besides making a name in the work environment, Mohapi was also nominated to be a member of two honour societies, namely the Phi Theta Kappa and National Society of Collegiate Scholars. However, since he is not a US citizen, he was not eligible to receive any of the benefits that come with the honour of being nominated.
Other accolades include going to Arizona with his college mates, for a week to participate in the mid-year retreat programme as well as scoring a perfect GPA (Grade Point Average) score of 4.0, last semester. This is the result of scoring all A’s in all subjects.
Mohapi is excited that he will be home next month. “I miss my family the most, my parents and my brother and sister. I also miss my extended family, my friends and South African food. I miss DUT too. I can’t wait to come back,” he said excitedly.
Pictured: Gomo Mohapi, volunteers his time at the 140th Annual White House Easter Egg Roll.