Shawco graduates moving on and up

Shawcos top matric graduates have enrolled to study in their respective fields at UCT. At the back, from left are Shawco director Gavin Joachims and Shawco member Niel de Wet. In the middle are Shawco graduates Anele Siyotula, from Heideveld High; Abdurahmaan Abrahams, from Claremont High, and Yusuf Samaai, from South Peninsula High. In front, are Shawco member Delicia Govender; Mogammad Khidr Salaam, from Rondebosch Boys High, and Faith Xintolo, from Maitland High.

Matric pupils who excelled in their exams after signing up for extra weekend tuition offered by Shawco had a chance to bask in their achievements this week.

The UCT non-profit organisation congratulated its top 2016 matric graduates on the Jammie steps, at the university, on TuesdayJanuary 24.

For a year, Shawco had helped them to improve their results and realise their true potential. Now they have been accepted at UCT to study their dream careers.

Rondebosch Boys’ High matriculant Mogammad Salaam joined the Shawco programme at the beginning of his matric year and finished the year with an A aggregate.

Mogammad has now been accepted into the UCT medical programme and will be taking a gap year before starting his studies in 2018.

“My science teacher told me about Shawco, and I needed all the help I could get in my final year. The Shawco teachers are enthusiastic and their enthusiasm built my confidence in my academic ability,” he said.

“It was tough watching my brothers go out on the weekend, but it paid off in the end. I will be travelling to Morocco and Turkey during my gap year and also volunteer at various places,” said Mogammad.

Claremont High matriculant Abdurahmaan Abrahams has been accepted to study mechanical engineering at UCT and passed with a 90 percent average after Shawco helped him with maths, physics and English.

“I struggled throughout the year with English and got 82 percent at the end of the year. My sister was with Shawco three years ago and she did well, so I joined too,” said Abdurahmaan.

Both Abdurahmaan and Mog-ammad were part of the weekend Shawco Saturday School and Shawco Shine programmes, which bring together close to 500 pupils between grades 10 and 12 for tuition in maths, physical science, life sciences, accounting and English.

Shawco Shine is a programme 250 pupils pay to attend. It subsidises the Shawco Saturday School which 220 pupils can attend for free. The pupils are also collected from their communities every Saturday morning and dropped off in the afternoon after classes free of charge.

“The learners who form part of the free class receive the same quality education and come from all over the Western Cape, Kensington, Khayelitsha, Athlone, Wynberg. We recruit top educators from Western Cape and have small classes so learners receive special attention,” said Shawco director Gavin Joachims.

“We will also have a winter-school programme for new learners who will have access to the labs. Some pupils start and drop out because of their financial standing, so we are looking for sponsorship.”

Shawco hopes to expand the programme to include more opportunities for pupils who can’t afford the tuition and this year it plans to take on 330 pupils. Call Mr Joachims at 021 406 6746 or visit www.shawco.org to find out more about the Shawco tuition programmes.