Thulisa Mquqo is an award winning radio personality from East London. At the tender age of 21, she has a lot of experience in the media industry. She has worked as a production assistant for MTV BASE South Africa. In 2018 she was the Editor-in-Chief of the Damelin East London Magazine, Dconnect. She was also a presenter for the Friday Night Youthology show known as the WORD OUT JAM for the East London based Christian radio station, Link FM, where she won an award for having the best Youthology show in 2018. Amongst all her other work, she is also a published author and has three books that are available online on the reading app WATTPAD. She is currently an intern for science journalism for the South African Agency for Science and Technology Advancement (SAASTA), hosted by the Kumkani FM. She is a co-presenter on the breakfast show, The Real Morning Experience, alongside former SAASTA intern Vuyolwethu Ngcofe. She also hosts a Sunday evening show on current affairs in science. She has a very colourful personality and has a fiery passion for science. She believes that it will pave a future that is bright for South Africa and the world.
Siqamo Yeko is from the small town of Komani, formerly known as Queenstown. She is a budding natural scientist, having majored at Nelson Mandela University. She loves being outdoors in a natural environment, because she feels it is good for the spirit. She also enjoys reading, writing and her sister’s cooking- she is the best cook she knows. It is her dream that in the next 10 years, she will obtain her PhD in Botany, and travel places. She is currently a scientist journalism intern hosted by Inkonjane FM in Flagstaff. She is grateful for the opportunity that SAASTA/NRF has given to her, because it is one of her missions to spread her love for science to everyone, especially people in rural areas who do not have access to science information. She feels that there is still untapped potential of young brilliant minds out there, who just need their imagination to be sparked.
Zimkita Linyana is a 25-years-old science journalism intern, based in the Eastern Cape Province. She is from a rural town called Mount Frere. She has a particular interest in the science and technology journalism beat.
She has a keen interest in influencing people to read for leisure and has a passion for the natural world. She is interested in traveling and networking at sciences or arts conferences and festivals.
She has a joint Bachelor Degree in Biochemistry and Microbiology from Rhodes University. Some of her dreams include owning three dogs, an outdoor cabin library and graduating with a PhD in Virology.
Ripfumelo Nyamani Faith Zaba, was born and bred in Hlengani village, outside the Malamulele Township in the Limpopo province. She attended Hlengani Primary School from1999 to 2006. In 2007, she attended E.P.P Mhinga Secondary School in Malamulele township, where she completed her Matric in 2011. She furthered her studies at the University of Venda, where she enrolled for Media Studies and graduated in 2018. She is currently completing her Bachelor of Arts Honours in Linguistics while working as a science journalism intern, hosted by the Nthavela community newspaper in Limpopo.
Zandile Ndlazi is a young and ambitious, and is very excited to join the South African Agency for Science and Technology Advancement (SAASTA) as a science journalism intern. She is a mature, hardworking, loyal, dedicated, patient, responsible, empathetic, compassionate, accountable and caring Geology postgraduate with an ability to work independently and collaboratively in her duties.
She was born and bred in a small village called Jozini in the Northern part of KwaZulu Natal. She obtained her BSc degree (in Geology and Chemistry) in 2016, and BSc Honours (in Geology) in 2017, both from the University of Fort Hare (UFH). She is currently registered for a Masters in Geology at the same institution.
Her experience is rooted in a rock-solid background of working with young and vulnerable people from all backgrounds and different life circumstances at higher level institutions. She has previously worked as an undergraduate tutor in the Geology Department at UFH from February 2016 to November 2018.
She is comfortable in both solitary and group situations and she has excellent communication skills, which are useful in times of contact with external organisations. She also has excellent observational and listening skills, which are highly effective when interacting with stakeholders.
She is a hard worker, and a self-motivated, goal oriented individual who is always looking for a challenge to enhance her skills and knowledge. She enjoys socialising with peers, reading, listening to music, jogging, camping, travelling and taking pictures. She can speak isiZulu, isiSwati, isiXhosa, isiNdebele and English fluently.
She is grateful to join SAASTA as a science journalism intern hosted by Inhloso Yesizwe Newspaper, based in Ladysmith in KZN. She plans to gain basic science journalism skills and use IsiZulu as an indigenous language to communicate science into the culture of the wider community. As an individual coming from a rural area where science is not well understood, it is now her duty to make science and technology relatable, through using their home language to explain it in a simple way.
Thabiso Goba recently graduated with a Diploma in Journalism from the Durban University of Technology.
During his Work Intergrated Learning at the university, as part of his final year studies, he worked for an IsiZulu weekly, UmAfrika, and news agency, Roving Reporters, which focused on environmental stories.
His previous work was published in publications such as GroundUp, News24 and Dailly Maverick.
His favourite writer is opinion-journalist Ta-Nehisi Coates.
Zamaswazi Phumla Shabalala is 25-years old and was born and bred in Kwa-Zulu Natal (KZN). She studied Journalism and Media Studies, majoring in news reporting and media studies. She completed her Diploma in 2015. She chose journalism because she is fascinated about radio and she believes that it is a powerful medium to educate and inform people about important aspects that surround them daily. She is a science journalist currently hosted by Nqubeko FM, a community radio station based in Ladysmith in KZN.
Tshepang Cornelius Baraganye was born and raised in Morokweng in North West. He attended primary school in Longaneng and went to Ogodiseng Middle School from Grade 7 to Grade 9. He later completed his matric at Setswakgosing High School. He further studied and graduated with a BA Communication at North West University in 2017. After the completion of his studies, he volunteered at Morokweng Youth Employment Service (MYES) as a communicator. He is interested in reading about current issues researching new knowledge about the world.
Reabetswe More is a young, focused and self-motivated individual. Her family describe her as a ‘Big, big dreamer’. She was born and raised in the small mining town called Rustenburg in the North West Province. She obtained a BA degree in Communication from North-West University, Potchefstroom. While studying at the university, she had the opportunity to work as a volunteer at the university’s campus radio station, Pukfm 93.6 and was part of their marketing team. She spends her weekends, especially Saturday, binge watching episodes of CSI and the Discovery Investigation channel. She finds science extremely riveting. She is fortunate to be part of the South African Agency for Science and Technology Advancement’s Youth Journalism Internship Programme. This will enable her to produce and communicate science and technology related stories to the Rustenburg community in Setswana, a language that they understand and speak.
Sive Ntsangani is a very determined, self-driven and ambitious individual from Cape Town, Khayelitsha, where he matriculated and graduated with a BSc in Applied Geology from the University of the Western Cape. He is originally from the Eastern Cape Province, from a small village called Qamata Basin in Cofimvaba. He is currently working as a science journalism intern, hosted by Zibonele Community Radio Station in Khayelitsha. This community radio station covers news in IsiXhosa, as well as some English and Afrikaans. He is primarily tasked to cover science and technology related stories and innovations, and some general stories specifically in his District Municipality. He is working with very passionate and motivated people in the news-editing team, who are always willing to transfer their skills, and he is eager to learn. At Zibonele FM, he is entrusted to report stories in a way that will enhance and broaden Zibonele FM listeners’ understanding of science and technology, and challenge their perception about science.
Masibulele Lunika, affectionately known as ‘Masi’, holds a National Diploma in Journalism from the Cape Peninsula University of Technology. At the university, he was afforded an opportunity to nurture his relationship with technology. A self-proclaimed geek, he loves science and technology.
He graduated in 2016 and acquired vast experience as a digital and online reporter. He has much technical knowledge and expertise on utilising various applications and digital/social media platforms for reporting purposes.
He has been fortunate to work for ITWeb, one of South Africa’s biggest technology publications, for more than a year. He is passionate about business and entrepreneurship.
Currently working at the Voice of Wits Campus Radio Station, he hopes to hone his science and technology reporting skills. This is the first time he is working for a radio station.
The South Africa Agency for Science and Technology Advancement (SAASTA) is a business unit of the National Research Foundation (NRF) with the mandate to advance public awareness, appreciation and engagement of science, engineering, innovation and technology in South Africa. Find out more
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