Soweto-born educator Mlungisi Nkosi has shared thrilling details about his 15-year career journey to democratise STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) education.
Nkosi said he knew he wanted to assist people like himself who may have not realised their potential and may have been locked into a vicious cycle of poverty because of a lack of access to quality education.
“I then started teaching from my grandmother’s back room in Naledi, Soweto, where I took unemployed young guys that were loitering around the streets. I started teaching them and today some of them have done remarkably well for themselves.”
Nkosi told “The Star” that being an educator is important to him because he wants to make a difference.
“I want to make a difference. Education is the only means through which someone can truly be empowered. That is why giving access to quality education is paramount to us. Being an educator gives one the opportunity to sow seeds of a personal transformation and journey and watch those seeds germinate into a precious flower,” he says.
His remarkable dedication culminated in the establishment of the Mlungisi Nkosi Maths & Science Centre in Northriding, Randburg, making STEM accessible to all.
The centre assists learners from Grades 8 to 12 with maths, science, and coding tutoring, as well as career guidance aligned with STEM.
The focus is on learners who have not performed well, although students seeking extra lessons are also welcome. Matric learners have access to exam preparation classes, while post-matric students can take upgrade classes to enhance their performance.
Speaking about his YouTube channel, which has amassed thousands of subscribers in the past few years since it was started, he said: “Starting the channel has given access to a lot of learners who otherwise would not have done well in maths and science. It has given hope to those struggling with the subjects that they too can not only pass but excel.
“The channel started in 2020 during the height of the lockdown to help give access to education to learners who could not attend school. It started receiving a lot of attention and gaining traction beyond the lockdown. By the end of 2021, it had grown to 20 000 subscribers. By the end of 2022, the channel had grown to over 100 000 subscribers and was incepted into the Black Voices Fund Class of 2022.”
Nkosi’s innovative approach has earned him accolades, including the Outstanding Educational Influencer award at the AKS Global Teaching Awards in Dubai.