Matiwane graduates with a doctorate
Not only did she inspire many to further their education to unlock doors of opportunity, but Buyiswa Matiwane walked the path to achieve what she has been preaching as an educator to her students for years.
Matiwane, who is now to be addressed as "Doctor", recently obtained her Ph.D. in Learning Support at the University of South Africa.
Matiwane (47) started her academic career at Imizamo Yethu High School where she matriculated in 1989. She attained her Senior Primary Teachers Diploma in 1993, a B.Tech in Education in 1998, B.Ed Honours in 2006 and a Master's degree in 2011.
She says what inspired her to obtain her Ph.D. was when she saw someone wearing a red graduation gown many years ago. "I asked, 'Why is that person wearing such an unusual gown?' When I was told why, I said to myself I want to wear that gown one day. I never gave up on that dream," says Matiwane.
Matiwane attributes her success to self-discipline and love for education and, most importantly, the support of her family. She started working as a teacher at Mzoxolo Primary School at age 24 and has been with the school for over two decades, where she helped mould and inspire learners to achieve success in life.
Asked if she always wanted to be a teacher, Matiwane says, "I became a teacher by default. I always wanted to be a lawyer, however that didn't work out well. But when I got into teaching, I fell in love with it immediately."
She said what she loves about teaching is seeing students listening attentively and embracing knowledge and applying it to make them successful.
Women empowerment is also one of the things that interest Matiwane. She believes that if women can focus on education, this will break the circle of women abuse and make them self-sufficient and not dependent on men.
Matiwane, who is also known as a music lover and spent many years teaching music at schools, is now working as educator at the George Correctional Services. Her P.hD. thesis focuses on creating guidelines for learning support needs of incarcerated open distance learning students in a changing education landscape. In her qualitative study, she developed guidelines to assist with the higher education of incarcerated students.
Dr Buyiswa Matiwane with her husband, Velile.