Formal education has become a necessity for people in the world today. Whether in the arts, humanities or sciences, it equips individuals to be useful to themselves first and foremost and to the modern society. As such, governments across the globe prioritize education in their policy-making. Individuals who also realize the importance of acquiring formal education do their best to achieve their dreams and goals, no matter the challenges they may face. One of such individuals is Shingirai Nyakabawu, a young Zimbabwean man.
In a truly inspiring and amazing story of persistence, we see a young man who in the space of 10 years transformed himself from a “village boy” to proudly obtaining his PhD. As it is the season for graduation in many countries, this particular story has gained a lot of attention and stands out as a beacon of hope for people from underprivileged backgrounds.
According to sources, Shingirai hails from a poor village but did not allow his lack of access to resources hold him back from achieving his dreams. In 2012, Shingirai graduated from the University of The Western Cape with a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology, Psychology and anthropology. In 2013, he received a Bachelor of Social Science with Honors in Public Policy and Administration from the University of Cape Town.
From 2014 to 2015, Shingirai worked on and graduated with a Master of Public Administration degree from the University of the Westem Cape. In 2020, he graduated from the same university with his Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Anthropology.
To celebrate his achievements, Shingirai posted pictures of himself from his various graduations with the caption “My last ten years. From the village to PhD”. The post, which has since gone viral, opened up conversations about education and the lack of access to it for people in certain parts of Africa. Other people also saw it as a source of inspiration, to continue chasing their dreams.
Today, Shingirai is an Associate Lecturer at the University of the Western Cape.