Top Female Learner 2012 At Altmont Technical High School, Soweto

Posted / 12 September 2016


‘Before the Columba Academy, I was like many young people, living for the now, taking my education and my future for granted. I was an average student in a poorly performing school’ recalls 22-year-old Caroline Mathonsi.

‘I was one of those learners who’s always late for class. I was also not interested in working with other people. I never thought I could be a leader, that was for clever or important people’.’

‘Then I went through the programme and came to understand that leadership is first and foremost about leading one’s self, and I started to focus on time management and getting to class on time. I also connected with a sense of purpose. I realised that if you want to achieve things of significance, you need to involve others.’

This attitude served to make Caroline a highly respected role model at her school and a key contributor to the community based organisation New Breed Generation. She ended matric as the top female learner and is now completing the traineeship component of her national diploma in chemical engineering.

‘Ultimately, leadership for me is about having a vision, being a pioneer and serving others,’ she says. ‘Personal development and service connect: you grow through your service to others. When you impart knowledge or experience, when you give that away to others, when you serve others, you grow.’

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