Gasant Abarder, Independent Media regional executive editor.
Gasant Abarder, the regional executive editor at Independent Media, graduated cum laude at CPUT yesterday with a bachelor of technology (BTech) in journalism.

“I’m really happy because I took on this challenge with a lot of things happening. With a busy schedule, attending work here and abroad. And earlier this year I was blessed with a beautiful baby. 

"My baby girl was born the same week my thesis was due so it feels good after begging myself to go back after 20 years,” Abarder said. 

“I think the advantage is that I have been acquitted myself better than if I was still a 20-year-old and I am glad I waited.

“The results came out at the beginning of December. There was a delay online and when I opened it and saw distinctions I knew that this immense patience had paid off.

“I mean being able to look at the theory again of what an editorial manager is all about - that was exciting.”

He said the advice he would give others was “you can get through it - just knuckle down because the reward is sweet.”

He credited Sipho “Hotstix” Mabuse for encouraging him to do the degree.

Last year, when Abarder met Mabuse, he told him he had finished matric at the age of 60.

“I was like wow - here is a shining inspiration,” Abarder said.

A chuffed Mabuse said: “I’m am so humbled that I could inspire someone, especially someone like him. I finished matric at 60 and next year I am looking to further my studies in anthropology. If I could do it, and he could do it, it shows that we are all capable of believing and achieving.”